C.H. Laessig died on this day. Early in 1905, he opened the first gas station in the United States at 418 South Teresa in St. Louis. Laessig and his partner Harry Grenner ran a garden hose from a tank to fill up the cars. Prior to that time, most motorists brought a can to the store for gasoline. Laessig and Grenner ended up with a chain of 40 stations across St. Louis.

This post was contributed by Ross Malone. A historian and a retired school teacher, Ross has authored many books about Missouri’s history, weird facts, and folk tales. He has also written children’s historical fiction. Visit his website, and buy his books in the Missouri Life store.