Focus on the Backroads » Photo Journeys


Once this  unique West Texas landmark, Bob’s Oil Well,  was one of the states busiest road-side businesses.  Located at the crossroads of US 70 and TX 70 in Matador, Texas.

Luther “Bob” Robertson, a World War I veteran, moved to Matador in the 1920s and worked as a filling station attendant.  In 1932 he decided to open his own service station.  To draw attention to the station he built a wooden oil derrick over the station.  He replaced the wooden structure with an 84 foot tall steel derrick and included lights, that could be seen for miles.  Bob paid long distant truck drivers to place signs at strategic locations across the nation stating how many miles to Bob’s Oil Well in Matador.  Soon travelers from near and far were visiting.

Robertson enlarged his business to include a grocery store, cafe (next door), garage, and even a small zoo where visitors could see caged rattlesnakes, monkeys, lions, coyotes and a white buffalo.

Bob died in 1947.  His wife, Olga, kept Bob’s open until it closed in 1950’s.  In 2004 it was placed on the Texas endangered building list and a historical marker was placed at the site.

Bob Robertson is one of my new heroes……war veteran, worker, business owner, and a marketing mastermind.

“There is no one road to success – you must find your own route”   Robert Kryonsaki




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