GO: Petrified Wood Gas Station in Decatur

November 24, 2012
Petrified Wood Station in Decatur, Texas. Photograph by Tom Wiley.

Petrified Wood Station in Decatur, Texas. Photograph by Tom Wiley.

Before the interstate highway system bypassed the main streets of small town America, there was a thriving tourist trade among businesses offering roadtripping travelers places to buy gas and eat a hot meal.  In order to attract travelers these businesses often used unusual architecture and sights to get people to stop, linger and buy.

Built in 1927, the Texas Tourist Camp in Decatur, Texas offered gas, food and lodging to travelers along US Highway 81/287. According to Mainstreet Decatur Texas “Local Businessman C.F. Boydston purchased this site, a former feed lot in 1927. Recognizing a potential business opportunity offering services to the traveling public, he built a wooden shed and gas station in 1927. Travelers were allowed to build campfires during overnight stays and by 1931 Boydston added three wooden cabins with garages to the camp complex. The buildings were later faced with rock and more cabins were added in 1935. The original wooden gas station was covered with petrified wood in 1935 when the highway was widened and remained in operation by the Boydston family until 1988.”

It’s claimed that the cafe, now called The Whistle Stop, is still in operation.

The Texas Tourist Camp is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.



View Larger Map


If you like exploring the back roads and byways of Texas, we hope you’ll consider subscribing to RIDE TEXAS®, an independent quarterly travel journal for the roads and small towns of Texas.

Events

Metal Mania Bike Night

August 24 @ 8:00 pm - August 25 @ 1:00 am

Kickass Bike Night August 24th at Hat Tricks in Lewisville, Tx from 8pm-1am!!! NO COVER for ALL Riders & Bikers, VIP Motorcycle Parking in front, Food & Drink Specials Live music by Ozzolution & Kill ‘Em All – a tribute to Metallica, FREE raffle, $20 pitcher & pizza combo, Vendors on-site & more. They’ll be giving away some AWESOME stuff in the FREE raffle including TWO gift certificates for $150 Tattoo courtesy of Change Of…
Find out more »

$10.00 – $25.00

The Great Ride – Benefiting Special Olympics of Texas

August 31 @ 7:30 am

This year’s ride will both Start and End at CityLine in Richardson. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m. with coffee, donuts and live music. Kickstands up at 9:30 a.m. While this is a group ride, it is not escorted. Riders are encouraged to go at your own pace and arrive safely back at CityLine for the festivities about 11:30 a.m. The overall ride is about 2 hours long, not quite 100 miles. Each paid participant in…
Find out more »

$15

CMA Asphalt Feast Rally

September 5 - September 8

Asphalt Feast Rally Sept. 5- 8, 2019 Chandler, TX Free registration for all non-CMA members Hosted by Northeast Texas Christian Motorcyclists Association Registration at Family Life Center (First United Methodist Church ) – Hwy 31 Chandler, Texas There will be: Thursday Night Bike night at DQ Guided Rides New York to Paris ride Bike Games Youth activities And more For details and registration visit Asphalt Feast Rally Or contact Jeffrey Coker – (903) 238-6202 or…
Find out more »

$15.00

Texas ABATE 24th Annual State Rally

September 6 - September 8

$15 per person for the entire weekend $10 per person after 9pm Saturday Gate opens Friday at noon to get this party started Live Music 🎶 on the Stage Friday night Lil’ Jesse Bluez Band and Saturday night Blackout Betty Free Camping – self-contained RVs welcome Bad Ass Bike Show Saturday Crazy Biker Games Bad Ass Trophy 🏆 for longest distance traveled by motorcycle Texas ABATE annual general membership meeting 2pm Saturday Vendors $35 (includes…
Find out more »

Free to public

Big T Memorial BBQ Cook Off and Music Festival

September 7 - September 8

The Big T Memorial BBQ Cookoff and Music Festival is a two-day event benefitting children with special needs in Freestone and surrounding counties. The event kicks off Friday, September 7th with the BBQ Cookoff followed by Texas country artists JB & The Moonshine Band and Blacktop Mojo. Saturday features a variety of events including the 21st Annual Show of Wheels Classic Car Show, Fairfield City Wide Garage Sale, and a Coon Hunt. The event culminates…
Find out more »

Bike Nights