417-419 Foster St.

36.000003, -78.901777

Cross Street
Year built
Construction type
Building Type
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Looking west on Hunt St., 01.11.58
(Courtesy The Herald-Sun Newspaper)

As with most of the structures on Foster St., the building at 417-419 was built to house auto-related businesses. A series of such businesses have utilized the building through its entire history; it appears to be the last such business still extant on Foster.

In the 1940s, it housed Vickers Motor Co.; Jones upholstery was added to the 419 bay by the 1950s. By the 1960s, it had become Terry John and Son Auto Repairs and City Tire Service. No business was listed at the location in 1970.

Today, it is Cole's Auto and Transmission Shop.

Looking southwest, 06.07.08

36.000003 -78.901777


mike cole is the best!

No, Gary K. is!

Thanks Minerva - While I don't know Mike Cole, I'm certainly willing to cede the dais.


Is this business still in operation? I've never seen it open.

still open.
Mike is there M-F.
A good mechanic.

You can see the Durham Brazing
steel storage bldg in the background. Any more shots from Roney street available?

I work at coles auto and trans. we are open 5 days a week. it sure is amazing to see that old picture of the shop. it has changed a lot from back then, and the doors are moved around some. but wow that sure is cool. thanks for putting us up here. i'll show mike.


Hi Gary -

Based on Google and Mapquest, I think the historical photo was taken facing west on Hunt Ave, not Hunt St. (Why it's called "Avenue" east of Foster, and "Street" to the west, I have no idea.)

Thanks Toby, but I think Google and Mapquest are wrong. The Durham City Street Atlas lists the entire length as Hunt St., as do the property tax records. Vega Metals lists their address as 214 Hunt St. (this picture was taken from in front of their building.) It certainly wouldn't be the first Google map labeling error I've run across.


The 417 - 419 Foster St. building was occupied in the late 70's - early 80's by Carrington's Body Shop and towing. The owner, Wange Carrington, an engaging, likable young black entrepreneur was murdered at his home near Roxboro, and the business apparently closed thereafter.

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