York Town Square

Part of the USAToday Network

Besser’s, always open on the Susquehanna Trail, served as welcome stop for motorists

Bob Ketenheim’s ‘Around Glen Rock includes this photo of an icon of the old Susquehanna Trail, Besser’s Service Station and 15 tourist cabins. The trail was then Route 111. Besser’s stood 11 miles south of York, where the Shrewsbury Township building now sits. Also of interest: This time, entrepreneur in York County’s Glen Rock bet on the wrong horse.

A recent fire at the Midway Motel in Loganville raised interest in old motels along the Susquehanna Trail.

Few were larger than Besser’s, several miles south of the Midway, as the accompanying photos show.


This photo also comes from ‘Around Glen Rock.’ Besser’s enterprises included a department store and tourist camp.


The tourist cabins at Besser’s are indicative of old road lodging before the more modern motels offered fully attached the cabins, with their own bathrooms.

Old tourist cabins, some still in use as residences, still be seen along the Lincoln Highway (Route 30) and other old roads.

An intact, refurbished tourist camp, Lincoln Motor Court, operates today, offering accommodations west of Bedford on the Lincoln Highway.

John Hufnagel emailed this photo (and the two below) of Besser’s from the Glen Rock Historic Preservation Society.


Besser’s was open 24-7, a welcome sight for motorists: ‘We never close.’

The interior of a Besser cabin, right out of ‘It Happened One Night’ in which a tourist cabin served as home for the night for the Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert characters.