Society of
Automotive Historians

2022 WSAH Summer Meeting

The WSAH Summer Meeting was called to order at 11:00 AM on Friday, July 8th, in the Special Exhibit Building at the Iola Car Show. Six officers and directors were in attendance, along with four members. The minutes and the treasurer’s report of the Spring Meeting were reviewed and approved.

Following up on discussions from the Spring Meeting, the formation of sustainable committees to handle the Chapter operations was further explored. Ralph Kalal made a motion that the WSAH volunteers working the Iola Car Show be thanked for their selfless dedication to the event. A lengthy discussion ensued about the WSAH commitment to the Iola Car Show, with the show staff requesting that the WSAH handle even more responsibilities next year. Ken Nimocks and Don Gullikson will meet with the show staff for a review of operations and the role of the WSAH at the event. This will be a topic of further discussion at the WSAH Fall Meeting and accentuates just how important new WSAH member recruitment is. Members will be asked for their input on recruitment methods and incentives.

The Summer Meeting was adjourned at 12:30.


2022 is also the 50th anniversary of the filming of the movie American Graffiti, released in 1973. Cast members from the movie were featured celebrities at the Iola Car Show this year.

WSAH Officers Ken Nimocks and Don Gullikson with (l-r) Candy Clark, Mackenzie Phillips and Cindy Williams.

2022 WSAH Spring Meeting

The WSAH Spring Meeting was held Saturday April 23, 2022 at the Dahl Auto Museum in La Crosse, Wisconsin at 1:00 PM. Twelve Officers, Directors and members were in attendance.

The Treasurer reported that funds are sufficient to handle current and the usual future expenses, provided income at least remains steady.

Follow up on discussions from the Fall, 2021meeting, culminated in a motion as follows: “The WSAH membership will create a special committee of members, appointed by the President, to study expanding membership through better outreach and increased activities; the committee to submit a report to the President within six months; and the President to then make recommendations for consideration by the general membership at the following regular meeting.” Questions or comments should be made directly to the committee; the committee will also solicit ideas from individual members. The motion passed without dissent. 

Don Gullikson reported on attending the Iola Car Show meeting for volunteer chairpersons. Updates include changes in volunteer parking areas, the “golf cart interstate” (separate, designated roads and parking areas for carts), show car trailer parking, special 50th Anniversary food pricing, events, special guests, etc. Few of the changes will affect our Special Exhibit area. Information for our volunteers will be included in the next Carhart Chronicle. 

Ralph Kalal made a motion, second by William Chartrand, to donate $100 to the Dahl Auto Museum along with an Honorary WSAH membership, which includes our Carhart Chronicle newsletter. A special thank you to Museum Curator Jim Dennison for his informative and interesting conversations and to his fellow curator Adrian Johnson for initially setting up our meeting area. Members found the museum to be a very worthwhile venue to visit and several commented on the extraordinary vehicle restorations and overall appeal of the collections. 

The meeting was adjourned at 2:00 PM.

Most of the WSAH attendees at the Dahl Auto Museum

2021 WSAH Carhart Chronicle Newsletter

We are delighted to announce that the Carhart Chronicle, the newsletter of the WSAH, has been awarded a 2021 Golden Quill Award by Old Cars in their “sub-compact chapters category.” Congratulations to the Chapter and to Carhart Chronicle editor Ralph Kalal. All past WSAH newsletters can be viewed at under “The Spark/Carhart” toolbar tab.

2021 WSAH Autumn Meeting

The WSAH Autumn Meeting was called to order by Chapter President Ken Nimocks at 2:00 PM on Saturday, October 30, 2021, at the Wisconsin Automotive Museum in Hartford, WI. The two hour meeting covered member recruitment, increasing public awareness of the WSAH, the formation of committees to tackle specific projects, and future meeting sites. Ken Nimocks reviewed the 2021 Iola Car Show and Don Gullikson provided a preview of the planning for the 2022 show, including maps of the grounds. The attendees approved donating $1,000 to the Wisconsin Automotive Museum.

2021 WSAH Summer Meeting and Iola Car Show

The WSAH Summer Meeting was called to order by Chapter President Ken Nimocks at 11:00 AM on Saturday, July 10, 2021 at the Iola Car Show, with nine members and guests in attendance. In his report, Treasurer Gary Koehnke verified that even without receiving the usual payment for show set up and information table services rendered by the Chapter to the Iola Car Show, due to the cancellation of the 2020 show, the Chapter’s treasury was still in sound financial condition.

Old Business:  Adding more links to the website, to steer visitors to such topics such as The Museum of Speed, Wisconsin produced vehicles, the story of the Pug, and other not so well-known Wisconsin vehicle manufacturing startups, was discussed. Also, period newspapers would be an important source of information on some early auto makers. Webmaster Jessica Zdanowicz has brought the website up to date with postings of The Carhart Chronicles chapter newsletters, as well as the predecessor Spark newsletters. Updating the WSAH brochure, with an improved format for joining and paying dues, was discussed. The updated brochures could be made available to potential members by being placed at the Wisconsin Automotive Museum in Hartford and The Automobile Gallery in Green Bay.

Iola Car Show:  Members roped off and set up the display areas and guided each car into position. The Lindsay Room and the Theme Exhibit area, “The ’70s Show – Rerun,” were completed on Wednesday, July 7th. The car show areas were at full display capacity and some cars had to be turned away on Friday. Attendance set a record at 121,500.

The meeting was adjourned at 1:00 PM.

Part of “The ’70s Show – Rerun” display inside the Theme Exhibit building. (Don Gullikson Photo)
Three drag racing greats at the 2021 Iola Car Show. (l-r) Bruce Larson (Funny Cars), Don “Big Daddy” Garlits (Top Fuel) and Larry Lombardo (Pro Stock, drove for Bill Jenkins). Photo courtesy of Sharon Lombardo.
(l-r) WSAH Treasurer Gary Koehnke and President Ken Nimocks. (Don Gullikson Photo)



2020 WSAH Fall Meeting

Ten members and one guest met at the Wisconsin Automotive Museum in Hartford at 2:00 PM. President Ken Nimocks reviewed the personnel changes in the Iola Car Show management and what direction the show may take in 2021. The buildings used for some of the displays in the past are also undergoing change.

George Tesar has been working on a possible conference and meeting at the Wisconsin Historical Society in Madison, but unfortunately these plans must be delayed.

Members present passed motions to donate $250 to the Iola Car Show and to make the Chapter’s annual donation of $1,000 to the Wisconsin Automotive Museum. Wisconsin Automotive Museum Director Dawn Bondhus Mueller provided an update on the museum building and collection. Much of the overhead lighting has been switched to LED and many physical plant switches have been upgraded. Two Kissels have been donated to the collection in the past year and the Nash Car Club of America has made improvements to their display in the museum.

2020 WSAH Summer Meeting

Even with the cancellation of the Iola Car Show due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Chapter was still able to hold a one hour WSAH Summer Meeting on the Iola show grounds on Saturday, July 11, at 2:00 PM, after the 1,000+ car Rally for Iola concluded. Six members were in attendance at Iola, and another three members were able to join via a conference call service. Also in attendance was Denise Clumpner, of the Iola Car Show, to discuss show planning for 2021.

2019 WSAH Fall Meeting

The WSAH Fall Meeting took place on Saturday, September 21, 2019 in conjunction with the 37th Annual Hill & Valley Antique Car & Americana Show at Baer Park in Cross Plains, WI. The meeting was called to order by President Ken Nimocks at 1:30 PM.  Minutes from the summer meeting at Iola were accepted, along with Gary Koehnke’s current Treasurer’s Report. Various fund raising activities for the Chapter were discussed and will be explored further.  way in The Automobile Gallery mezzanine conference room.[/caption]allery main hall, north side.

2019 WSAH Summer Meeting and Iola Car show

The 2019 Iola Car Show in Wisconsin took place Thursday, July 11th, through Saturday, July 13th. The theme of the Special Exhibit this year was Calling All Car Clubs. The WSAH continued its annual tradition of staffing the Special Exhibit.

There were some 55 cars inside the Special Exhibit building as part of the Car Club displays. Approximately 35 Car Clubs had displays inside and outside the Special Exhibit building. The WSAH answered questions and sold Iola Car Show posters, books, pins and other souvenirs at their tables by the main entrance of the building.

The WSAH Summer Meeting was held on Friday, July 12th, at 2:00 PM in a conference room in the Special Exhibit building, with fourteen members in attendance. Dave Tesch is handing over the editorship of the Carhart Chronicle chapter newsletter to Ralph Kalal. Dave did an outstanding job over the years, and Ralph is well qualified to carry on the tradition in his own way. Sincere thanks to both Dave and Ralph. Ken Nimocks and George Tesar will meet in the near future to discuss collaborative efforts between the WSAH and the Wisconsin Historical Society, including WSAH members possibly volunteering to give presentations at the WHS, assisted by the automotive archivist of the WHS.

(l-r) Ken Nimocks, Dan Manola, Don Gullikson, Dave Tesch and Jim Morris in the Special Exhibit building.
Front entrance of the Special Exhibit Building. (Don Gullikson photo)
Back display area of the Special Exhibit Building. (Don Gullikson photo)
1930 Nash 452R Coupe and 1936 Nash Ambassador 8 4dr Sedan. (Jim Morris Photo)

A 1930 Franklin and a 1937 Packard 1501 Coupe flank the CCCA table in the Special Exhibit Building, with a neighboring Studebaker. (Jim Morris photo)