Learn About Local Celebrities From Cambridge, Wisconsin

Ole Evinrude

Inventor Of The Outboard Motor

  • Born in Oslo, Norway April 19, 1877. Died on July 12, 1934
  • Moved to United States in 1882; Settled in Cambridge, WI
  • Age 16, became an apprentice machinist
  • Married Bessie Cary in 1906. One son, Ralph
  • 1909, founded Evinrude Motors in Milwaukee, WI
  • August 22, 1911 U.S. Patent issued to Evinrude Motor Company
  • 1919, designed the twin-cylinder, 3-HP, 48lb aluminum outboard motor

Arthur E. Melster

Founder of Melster Candy Company

  • Born in Milwaukee, WI in 1896. Parents: Gustov and Austermar Melster. One brother, Harvey. 
  • His family moved to Cambridge when Arthur was in the 6th grade. Graduated from Cambridge High School in 1915. His class consisted of seven girls and one boy. 
  • Some of his school years accomplishments: baseball, orator, started an orchestra and introduced the first high school prom. 
  • Served in the Army from 1918-1919. 
  • 1919, began working at the Bank of Cambridge. Through his leadership, the Cambridge area Chamber of Commerce was created in 1922 where he served as President of the Chamber for 30 years.
  • 1920, with his brother and mother, founded the Melster Candy Company, which actually began in the kitchen of his parents’ home.
  • On the 100th Anniversary of the Village of Cambridge, Arthur Melster called business leaders together and presented the idea of a “Cambridge Foundation.” The Foundation was established to receive funds for the betterment of Cambridge and the area. To establish the fund, each of the business leaders contributed $100. Art was elected President of the Foundation and held the position for over 30 years.
  • 1949, elected President of the Lake Ripley Country Club. During his tenure, five remodeling and additions completed. Served in the position for 26 years.

Arthur Davidson


  • Born in 1888, youngest of three boys
  • Some time after 1885, moved to Cambridge, WI where he resided for four years
  • Built 1st practical motorcycle in 1903
  • One of the founding members of Harley-Davidson, established in 1903
  • Convinced government officials that motorcycles could replace bicycles. By 1914, the USPS had more than 4800 Harley-Davidson motorcycles deliving mail, one of which was delivered to Peter Olson, a mail carrier who lived in Cambridge, WI
  • Driving force in setting up the nation-wide dealer network for Harley-Davidson
  • He and his wife perished in a car accident in 1950

Matt Kenseth

NASCAR Racer #17 & #20

  • Born March 10, 1972, Cambridge, WI
  • Married Katie Martin in 2000
  • Children: Ross, Kaylin, Grace, Clara, Mallory
  • Began Stock Car Racing in 1988 at age 16
  • 1991, youngest driver to win ARTGO racing series. Won Late Model Rockie of the Year at Slinger Speedway
  • Partnered with DEWALT Industrial Tools in the Busch Series
  • Became a professional NASCAR driver in 2000 and was named Sprint Cup Rookie of the Year
  • 2003 NASCAR Winston Cup Champion
  • Won Daytona 500 in 2009 and 2012
  • Raced and won on 20 different tracks with 38 Cup series victories

david scobie

Scobie Wagon Factory

  • Born in 1841 in Perthshire, Scotland
  • Immigrated with his family to Cambridge in 1851
  • Served in the Civil War
  • In 1868 opened his own blacksmith business on Main Street
  • Employed as many as a dozen men in business
  • Manufactured his designs for wagons, carriages, sleighs and farm machinery