L. Espenschied Wagon Co . 1843-1880 - Arensmann-Luedinghaus Wagon Mfg Co. 1860s-1880 - Luedinghaus & Espenschied Wagon Co. - 1880-1930s - St Louis, Missouri


Louis and Henry Espenschied of 148 Broadway, St Louis, Missouri were German natives who first opened a St Louis blacksmith shop in 1843. They soon expanded to wagons and by the 1850s were making large numbers for pioneers heading west.

Henry passed away in the early 1850s, but Louis continued, renaming the firm the L. Espenschied Wagon Co. Mormon records indicate that for the great migration of 1853, the settlers purchased fourteen wagons for $58 apiece from Louis Espenschied in St Louis for their westward trek to the great Salt Lake. During the civil war Espenschied received a large contract for wagons and wheels for the Union Army.

Hanna F. Arensmann married a young carriagemaker named John Henry Luedinghaus on May 9, 1858 in St. Louis. Money was given to young John Henry from his in-laws to form the Arensmann-Luedinghaus Wagon Manufacturing Co. soon after.

By the 1870s both firms were specializing in heavy commercial and farm wagons and they decided to join forces in 1880 as the Luedinghaus & Espenschied Wagon Co.

Louis Espenschied died in 1887, but his sons and Luedinghaus kept the business going, which survived into the 1930s making heavy wagons, trailers, commercial bodies and motor trucks (Luedinghaus Truck of the 1920s).


Feb. 25, 1922: The (St. Louis) Globe reported that St. Louis-built autos were the hit of the 1922 auto show here. The "Dorris," "Moon," "Gardner," St. Louis" and "Stanwood" were all built in St. Louis. Trucks manufactured here included the "Eagle," Luedinghaus," "Power" and the "Traffic."


Espenscheid, Frederick


St. Louis County's first market house was built there in 1862 by Walter Espenschied of the wagon making family, at what is now 8200 North Broadway.


The Mormons purchased fourteen wagons for $58 apiece from Louis Espenschied in St Louis for their westward trek in the great migration of 1853.

he was working for a man or company known as Louis Espenschied

1863 Ad in St Louis paper

No. 582 Broadway, Between Brooklyn and Hempstead Streets (opposite the Mound)
North St. Louis, Mo.


When I was a lad of 12, and had led in north St. Louis, at Baden, a happy life of rod and gun, my dear father failed financially and lost the home on the hilltop there.  My mother then removed to her folks in Brooklyn, N.Y. pending father's getting on his feet again...   (Excerpt from the account donated to the St. Louis Library by L. Espenschied.) 



For more information please read:

G.N. Georgano & G. Marshall Naul - The Complete Encyclopedia of Commercial Vehicles

Albert Mroz - Illustrated Encyclopedia of American Trucks & Commercial Vehicles

Denis Miller - The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Trucks and Buses

Tad Burness - American Truck Spotter's Guide, 1920-1970

Tad Burness - American Truck & Bus Spotter's Guide, 1920-1985

Robert M Roll - American trucking: A seventy-five year odyssey

David Jacobs - American Trucks: A photographic essay of American Trucks and Trucking

David Jacobs - American Trucks: More Colour Photographs of Truck & Trucking

John Gunnell - American Work Trucks: A Pictorial History of Commercial Trucks 1900-1994

George W. Green - Special-Use Vehicles: An Illustrated History of Unconventional Cars and Trucks

Daniel D. Hutchins - Wheels Across America: Carriage Art & Craftsmanship

Ronald G. Adams - 100 Years of Semi Trucks

Stan Holtzman - Big Rigs: The Complete History of the American Semi Truck

Stan Holtzman & Jeremy Harris Lipschultz - Classic American Semi Trucks

Stan Holtzman - Semi Truck Color History

Donald F. Wood - American Beer Trucks

Donald F. Wood - Beverage Trucks: Photo Archive

Donald F. Wood - Commercial Trucks

Donald F. Wood - Delivery Trucks

Donald F. Wood - Dump Trucks

Donald F. Wood - Gas & Oil Trucks

Donald F. Wood - Logging Trucks 1915 Through 1970: Photo Archive

Donald F. Wood - New Car Carriers 1910-1998 Photo Album

Donald F. Wood - RVs & Campers 1900-2000: An Illustrated History

Donald F. Wood - Wreckers and Tow Trucks

Gini Rice - Relics of the Road

Gini Rice - Relics of the Road - Impressive International Trucks 1907-1947

Gini Rice - Relics of the Road - Keen Kenworth Trucks - 1915-1955

Richard J. Copello - American Car Haulers

Niels Jansen - Pictorial History of American Trucks

John B. Montville - Refuse Trucks: Photo Archive

Bill Rhodes - Circus and Carnival Trucks 1941-2000: Photo Archive

Howard L. Applegate - Coca-Cola: Its Vehicles in Photographs 1930 Through 1969: Photo Archive

James T. Lenzke & Karen E. O'Brien - Standard Catalog of American Light-Duty Trucks: 1896-2000

James K. Wagner - Ford Trucks since 1905

Don Bunn - Dodge Trucks

Fred Crismon - International Trucks

Don Bunn - Encyclopedia of Chevrolet Trucks


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