Dunkle’s Gulf Station along the Lincoln Highway in Bedford County is a throwback to the early days of American automobile transportation.
Designed to be Gulf’s showpiece service station between Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, the art deco styling of the building has been attracting motorists since it first opened in 1933.
Opened by Dick Dunkle, the Gulf station offered fuel and repairs along America’s first coast-to-coast highway.
A popular stop along the Lincoln Highway Heritage Corridor, Dunkle’s Gulf Station was passed down to Dick’s son Jack Dunkle, who continued to operate the family business in a remarkably similar fashion until his passing in March 2023.
Dunkle’s Gulf Station and Art Deco Architecture
The art deco movement got its start in France in the 1920s, and made its way to the United States in the 1930s.
Art deco architecture was meant to reflect a sleek, modern style that symbolized wealth and sophistication.
The shiny polychrome tile that adorns Dunkle’s Gulf Station is a common feature in art deco-styled buildings from the 1930s.
Even the little details like the owner’s name emblazoned aboove the front door were done artfully.
Dunkle’s Gulf Station Today
With the passing of owner Jack Dunkle, the future of Dunkle’s Gulf is uncertain at this time.
Hopefully steps will be taken to preserve the service station as a tribute to both the early days of road tripping across America, and the hard work and commitment to community exhibited by the Dunkle family as they operated this iconic Bedford business for the past 90 years.
How to Find Dunkle’s Gulf Station
Dunkle’s Gulf Station is located along the Lincoln Highway (now known as Business Route 30 or West Pitt Street) in Bedford, Pennsylvania.
Use GPS coordinates 40.01871, -78.50760 to navigate to Dunkle’s Gulf at the intersection of the Lincoln Highway and West Street.
Located just a half-mile west of Dunkle’s Gulf Station along the Lincoln Highway you’ll find the Bedford Coffee Pot, one of the few remaining “roadside giants” from the early days of automobile travel in America.
The Fort Bedford Museum explains the history of Bedford County on the site of a British fort originally built in 1758.
Old Bedford Village in Bedford County is a living history museum that gives you a glimpse into what life was like in western Pennsylvania from 1700 until 1899.
Shawnee State Park in Bedford County opened to the public in 1951, and has been a magnet for tourists ever since!
At the heart of the park is 451-acre Shawnee Lake, used by fishermen, boaters, swimmers, and bird watchers alike.
The 1806 Old Log Church is the oldest standing church in Bedford County and located right along the Lincoln Highway.
The Grand View Ship Hotel in Bedford County was, in its prime, one of the most famous attractions along the Lincoln Highway.
The Jean Bonnet Tavern in Bedford County not only serves up delicious food and beverages in a colonial American setting, but it is rumored to be the most haunted restaurant in Pennsylvania!
The Abandoned Pennsylvania Turnpike in nearby Breezewood (Bedford County) is a fascinating 13 mile-long remnant of America’s first superhighway.
If you enjoy all things Lincoln Highway, be sure to visit the Lincoln Highway Experience in Latrobe, a museum dedicated to telling the story of the first transcontinental automobile route linking the east and west coasts of the United States.
25 Must-See Destinations in Bedford County will show you even more great places to visit near Dunkle’s Service Station.
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