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Photo 24-JAN-29


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Gone now
Corner of 65 and crosstown

William (Bill) Soderquist, who had been born in Sweden, bought two acres of land and a small house. (The house was located near Coon Lake and he towed it on skids during the winter to the location he wanted it!) and began a business near the intersection of two dusty country roads (Central Avenue and County Road 18) that were barely more than trails in 1922. Bill was adept at welding and began a business making necessary repairs on machinery for farmers of the area. It was called “Central Garage” because of its central location; halfway between Minneapolis and Cambridge. His brother Gunnar joined him. They even built their own electric plant to produce 32 volt electricity

A new Central Garage, twice the size of the first, was built in 1932 and gas pumps were installed. Central Garage repaired cars, trucks and farm machinery; delivered towing and wrecking service, sold gas and oil and automotive accessories, issued motor vehicle licenses and sold Chevrolet cars and trucks. The Greyhound Bus started running through Ham Lake in 1929 and Central Garage became the depot. Business was good because Central Garage had the only tow truck and gas pumps between Minneapolis and Cambridge

Union 76 gas station

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