The old 1930s Phillips 66 station has a long history in Cuba. Built by Paul T. Carr, it had been a Phillips 66 station serving the needs of Route 66 travelers. When Carr expanded the operation, it became a Pontiac dealership as well.
When Carr sold it, it went through various owners and brands of stations until the Bill and Lynn Wallis bought it in 1968. It became their first Mobll station and “office” of the fledgling Wallis Oil business. From that modest beginning, Wallis Companies has expanded and grown to the point where it has over 600 employees in Missouri. The home office is still in Cuba, but it is in the modern brick building across the street.
Lynn and Bill Wallis always retained an appreciation for the small building where they got their start, but they didn’t quite know what to do with it. A fast food franchise wanted to buy it, but they knew it would be torn down, so they refused. Then after Bill died of cancer in 2001, Lynn Wallis began a project that would honor both Bill and the station’s history.
Working with Viva Cuba, a Route 66 Preservation grant, the Phillips 66 organzaiton, and others, the Wallis family restored the station to how it would have looked in the 1930s.
Viva Cuba hired Missouri artist Ray Harvey to paint the vintage scenes on the garage bays to commemorate the memory of Bill Wallis and the history of the station.
Now, Lynn Wallis and her children who help run the business can view the little station with pride.
Travelers can stop and see a part of Americana along Route 66.
And the town of Cuba, Missouri can be grateful that a part of its history has been preserved in an attractive way.
Visit the homepage for all things Viva Cuba.