City’s first gas station added to Rehoboth miniature village

January 27, 2022

Rehoboth’s first filling station was John Dick’s Garage, located on the north side of Rehoboth Avenue just west of First Street.

A scale model of the garage has just been mounted on historian Paul Lovett’s miniature village that re-creates Rehoboth during the railroad era. The Dick family was one of just four permanent resident families recorded for Rehoboth by the 1880 census. The family’s descendants added rich history to the town’s development.

In a 1925 photograph, two of those descendants, Ruth Melvin and Alberta Joseph, are seen walking by the gas pumps in front of John Dick’s Garage.

The replica model is dedicated to Evelyn Dick Thoroughgood, whose father owned the garage. The model is sponsored by Evelyn’s daughters, Melissa Thoroughgood and Lyn Thoroughgood Webster.

The new model joins more than 40 other buildings already positioned on the miniature village, a multi-year project to replicate Rehoboth Avenue during the railroad era.

The miniature village is on display in the Rehoboth Beach Main Street building near Grove Park.

Lovett hosts informal gatherings at 9:30 a.m., Wednesdays, with each meeting focusing on a unique aspect of Rehoboth history. Attendees may bring their own coffee and join the conversation. 

To schedule an appointment contact Paul Lovett at or 302-893-9391. To learn more, go to

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