79 8TH Street Clintonville, WI 54929

The Four Wheel Drive Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization for the purpose of maintaining and expanding an historical museum to house vehicles and memorabilia pertaining to the early development of the four wheel drive principle. The museum which is located at 40 East 11th Street, Clintonville, Wisconsin, is the original machine shop where Otto Zachow and William Besserdich developed the first simple and effective design for transferring power to all four wheels of an automobile. With the help and guidance of Clintonville Attorney Walter A. Olen, the company was reorganized and became the Four Wheel Drive Auto Company in 1909.

The emphasis switched from manufacturing automobiles to trucks. A 1912 U.S. Army test of trucks as replacements for mules and wagons gave the company its first major publicity, and the outbreak of World War I opened new markets in Europe and the United States. After the war, the company moved into new products including highway building and maintenance equipment, earth-moving machinery, and fire trucks. World War II once more brought increased markets and prosperity to the company. A relationship with premier race car constructor Harry Miller resulted in the Four Wheel Drive Miller that competed successfully at Indianapolis in 1931 and later.

The Foundation is currently seeking donations of historically significant vehicles and print and paper material from the public which is archived and managed under the guidelines of the National Association of Automobile Museums. We seek to preserve historical films and encourage new films and other related media. We are in the process of developing outreach programs and activities, and seeking to market commemorative products. In addition we are attempting to obtain additional building space to house historical vehicles.

We are a tax exempt entity and all donations are fully deductible. We are currently seeking funding from philanthropic organizations, individuals, and corporate entities to finance existing and proposed activities.

Donations can be sent to Four Wheel Drive Foundation, in care of John Rosenheim, CPA, Secretary, Treasurer, 79 8th Street, Clintonville, WI 54929.

Join our mailing list for the latest news

Open Saturdays 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM June - September
For an appointment call Bill or Eudine Hupke at 715-823-4552