Living

'You Wreck 'Em-We Get 'Em' drove success of Gulfport business

By Murella H. Powell

COURTESY AUSTIN LINDSEYThe H.R. Richards Auto Repair Shop opened on 25th Avenue about 1920.
COURTESY AUSTIN LINDSEYThe H.R. Richards Auto Repair Shop opened on 25th Avenue about 1920.

"You Wreck 'Em-We Get 'Em . . . Anytime-Anywhere," that was the slogan for the H.R. Richards Auto Repair Shop at 2305 25th Ave. in Gulfport.

Richards is not identified in this photo. He may be the gentleman standing on the left not wearing a uniform.

It was about 1920 when Richards opened his garage and service station, which quickly became a success. He carried Gorco gasoline and Britelite Kerosene "delivered daily fresh from the stills of the Gulf Coast Oil Refining Co." in Gulfport.

On Oct. 4, 1929, Richards became a charter member and officer of the Retail Oil Men's Association in Gulfport. Its purpose was to promote good will and better understanding among the retail oil and gas dealers and to improve public service.

Sometime in the 1930s, Richards started the Modern Welding and Machine Works at the same 25th Avenue address. Then in April 1943, due to the shortage of materials, equipment, tools and labor, and to cooperate in the nation's efforts to win a victory, Richards announced that he was closing his business for the duration of World War II.

Murella H. Powell, a local historian, writes the weekly Flashback column. Do you have a local photograph to submit to Flashback? It can be of any subject or event in the Coast's distant or recent past. Please send a description with your name, address and daytime phone number to Flashback, the Sun Herald, P.O. Box 4567, Biloxi MS 39535; or call 896-2424; or email living@sunherald.com.

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