The History of the Studebaker Corporation

Essay by bjva43High School, 12th gradeA-, January 2004

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Have you ever wondered about old brands of cars that aren't being produced anymore? That is my main reason that I decided to explore the history of the Studebaker car company. I wanted to learn how the corporation started, the types of vehicles that they produced, how the corporation was run, and what led to the corporation's demise. There have been many changes throughout the history of the Studebaker Corporation; they will be discussed in detail throughout this paper.

To learn how the company was started I decided that some family background was needed. The earliest ancestors of the Studebakers are known to have originated in Germany around the Ruhr Valley region. This region was highly regarded for its iron work and blade making. The Studebaker brothers Peter and Clemens decided to leave the region because of heavy taxation and religious intolerance. Since the two brothers belonged to a labor guild they were forced to find a new occupation for 5 years before they could leave Germany for the New World.

After the brothers had served their 5 years they decided to sail to the New World. Their journey by sea was taken on a ship named Harle, they landed in Philadelphia on September 1, 1736. As soon as they arrived in the U.S. they started farming in Pennsylvania. (DeWitt, 1)

The two brothers that started the Studebaker wagon business were Clement and John.

Clement was born in 1831, and John was born in 1833. Their parents were John and Rebecca Studebaker. John Studebaker owned his own farm and blacksmith shop, but was pulled into debt by a religious sect that he belonged to and was forced to sell his farm and move to Ashland, Ohio. He was again forced to sell out and this time he moved his...