HJ - Studebaker Club

The Iowa Hawkeye Chapter of the Studebaker Drivers Club will visit Clarinda Sunday, July 21. The Studebakers will be parked at about 11 a.m. in the nearby Page County State Bank parking lot during their visit. The Iowa Hawkeye Chapter of the Studebaker Drivers Club boasts about 100 families from Iowa and surrounding states who collect, repair, restore and enjoy these historic vehicles. (photo courtesy of Iowa Hawkeye Chapter of Studebaker Drivers Club)

The Iowa Hawkeye Chapter of the Studebaker Drivers Club will visit Clarinda on Sunday, July 21.

They will hold their monthly business meeting and lunch at J’s Pizza & Steak House then visit the Clarinda Carnegie Art Museum.

The Studebakers will be parked at about 11 a.m. in the nearby Page County State Bank parking lot during their visit. The public is welcome to view the vehicles.

The Iowa Hawkeye Chapter of the Studebaker Drivers Club boasts about 100 families from Iowa and surrounding states who collect, repair, restore and enjoy these historic vehicles. Active since 1972, this chapter is charted under the Studebaker Drivers Club which has more than 5,000 members with chapters in all 50 states and nine countries around the world.

Anyone with interest in Studebaker vehicles or the history of Studebakers are welcome to join.

Studebaker helped build America. In 1852, the Studebaker brothers started building horse-drawn buggies, carriages and the well-known Conestoga wagons used by families migrating across the prairies and into the west. In a few short years, Studebaker began building their 1902 electric automobiles and just a few years later gasoline-powered vehicles.

By 1915, Studebaker was making more than 45,000 cars annually and soon started heavy and light-truck production as well. During World War II, Studebaker produced trucks and radial engines for aircraft, including the B-17.

After the war, automobile and truck production resumed, and in 1950 and 1951, Studebaker offered their famed bullet-nose design. Studebaker was known for innovative design and in 1953 released the futuristic Lowey Coupe, also known as a Starlight Coupe.

During the last half of the fabulous ‘50s, Studebaker introduced their family of Hawks, merged with Packard, and in 1959 responded to the growing demand for a more compact family car with the Lark.

By 1963 Studebaker was in financial trouble but once again turned the automotive design world upside down when they unveiled the Avanti, a sports sedan which continued production under other ownership until 2006. Though the Avanti was universally acclaimed, Studebaker’s days as a United States company were numbered and production ceased at the long-time South Bend, Indiana, plant in 1964.

Studebaker production continued in Canada until 1966 when production at the Hamilton Plant ceased.

Now known as an Orphan Car Marquee, classic Studebakers are still around, and collectors enjoy talking about their vehicles with the public. More information can be found on WWW.StudebakerDriversClub.com

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