Friday Flashback #247

As traffic builds once again in Saugatuck, many drivers are stuck on Charles Street. They have time to look at Tarry Lodge, and wonder about its odd configuration on that tight lot.

Did it used to be something else?

Of course! Everything in Westport was once different.

Tarry Lodge — and before that, Abbondanza — was once Esposito’s service station.

In this 1929 photo — posted to social media by Deej Webb — it was the place to go for “No-Nox” Gulf gas, tires, ice cream, tobacco and “provisions.”

A taxi service operated there too. The phone number was 418.

As with many old photographs, there are questions. Are those the Espositos posing in front? If so, did they always dress that way? If not, who are those customers, and where were they going?

What about the little kid hiding shyly in the doorway? He (or she?) could still be alive today — though nearing 100.

Esposito’s was around for a long time. Here’s a view from the mid-1950s. Still a Gulf station, by then it offered storage, washing and lubrication.

You can really see the bones of Tarry Lodge in the photo above.

You can also see I-95 behind it — midway through construction that sliced through the neighborhood.

And contributes to the heavy traffic at this same spot today.

12 responses to “Friday Flashback #247

  1. Michael Calise

    There are still relatives of the Esposito Family living in Westport.

  2. Dick Seclow

    Wasn’t “No Xox” gas due to the lead additive? Wasn’t the National Car rental fleet also at this location?

    • Scott Brodie

      “No Nox” was Gulf’s brand name for their leaded anti-knock gasoline additive.

  3. Mike Joseph

    Flying back from college in the early Seventies, I think I recall being dropped off at Esposito’s by the CT limo service from La Guardia. Could then catch a cab back home from the train station across the street. Westport was still a small town then. The cab ride was ‘on account.’ No idea how much the fare was or when the parents got billed.

  4. Tammy Guarente

    It was also a Texaco station and a pick up/drop off for CT Limo

  5. Gloria Gouveia

    One of the early projects by Land Use Consultants (’85 or ’86) was obtaining approvals to convert the gas station to an Enterprise Car Rental facility.

  6. Todd Freeman

    Nice flashback Dan… And if the RTM doesn’t reverse P&Z’s decision regarding that huge Hiawatha development, we are all going to have a lot more time to admire the local Saugatuck scenery – it will be a right traffic mess…

  7. Dick Seclow

    “No Nox” gas got that way thanks to lead.

  8. Gloria Gouveia

    Wasn’t there a period of time when gas stations offered both leaded and unleaded gas?

  9. Caryl Beatus


  10. Patricia Reale Serafino

    Dan..that little boy in the photo was my dad Art Reale…the woman, his mother Lillian…who ran the store at the station. My dad passed in 2012..almost 91 years. He did get to see this photo, we framed it for him. His mom passed away in the 40s, ..very young.He grew up in Saugatuck.