346 A BICENTENNIAL HISTORY OF MISSISSIPPI GRESHAM PETROLEUM In 1920, W.W. Gresham of Indianola built the first drive-in service station in the Mississippi Delta. Gresham had three service stations by 1933, spanning from Indianola to Isola. Gresham and his son Bill founded Gresham Distributor Business in 1947 to supply fuel to area businesses, farms, and residences. In 1958, the Greshams partnered with John McPherson to incorporate as Gresham Petroleum. During the decades following World War II, business soared as the company bought and merged with other petroleum and gas companies in the Delta region. As it expanded, Gresham Petroleum developed and maintained its reputation of high quality service. Although founder W.W. Gresham died in 1978, Bill Gresham and John McPherson continued his exceptional service station legacy with the establishment of Double Quick convenient stores in the mid-1980s. Today, Gresham Petroleum continues to supply fuel to the Mississippi Delta, as well as southeast Arkansas. The company also supplies all fuel for the Delta-located Double Quick stores. PHOTO COURTESY OF GRESHAM PETROLEUM VIKING, FRED CARL, JR. Renowned Mississippi business leader Fred Carl, Jr., has spent the majority of his life in his hometown of Greenwood. Early in his career, Carl continued the legacy of his father and grandfather by building homes in the family construction business. In 1984, recognizing a need for high-end, commercial-grade home kitchen appliances, Carl founded the Viking Range Corporation. Viking Range officially manufactured and shipped its first appliance in 1987, and from then on, the company rose to immense success. During its prime, Viking Range employed more than 1,000 people. Carl was inducted to the National Kitchen & Bath Association Hall of Fame in 1994 and was chosen as the Mid-South Entrepreneur of the Year in 1996. He is also a member of both the Mississippi Business Hall of Fame and the Leflore County Hall of Fame. In 2002, Carl was named Man of the Year by the Greenwood Commonwealth. Carl served as President, Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer of Viking Range until his retirement in 2013, the same year that Viking became part of the Middleby Corporation, the largest corporate kitchen manufacturer in the world. PHOTO BY GREG CAMPBELL