SPRING HILL, Fla. — A Spring Hill curiosity along U.S. 19 that's been home to a number of auto-related businesses since the 1960's is set to soon become a national historic landmark.

What You Need To Know

  • Building on corner of Balm Street, Commercial Way once was trademark building for Sinclair Oil Company

  • Hurst family bought the building in the late 70's, moved auto repair center there, kept building shape

  • Landmark status already approved at local, state level

  • More Hernando County stories

In 1977, the price of oil was under $15 a barrel, U.S. 19 was a two-lane road, and the dinosaur-looking building on the corner of Balm Street and Commercial Way in Spring Hill was an oil company. 

“It was a trademark for Sinclair Oil Company back in the 60’s,” said Dana Hurst, co-owner of Harold's Auto Center, which owns the building now. "The fellow that built this seen the dinosaur at the World’s Fair in 1960 in New York, came back and built one.” 

Irene Hurst and husband Harold bought the property back in the 70’s when the family was looking for a permanent fixture for their auto repair center. They later passed the tradition and the business to their son, Dana. 

The building is now set to become a national landmark by the Florida Department of State Historic Preservation.

“Never really thought much," Dana told us. "it’s going to be pretty neat."

The building has already been approved for landmark status at the local and state level.  

The final step is to get it approved as a national landmark federally. At this moment, the family isn’t sure of when that will happen.

But one thing is certain. National landmark or not, everyone knows where Harold's Auto Center.

"Everyone knows where the dinosaur is at," Dana said.