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Encyclopedia Dubuque


"Encyclopedia Dubuque is the online authority for all things Dubuque, written by the people who know the city best.”
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Affiliated with the Local History Network of the State Historical Society of Iowa, and the Iowa Museum Association.


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Autograph Album of Favorite Stock Car Drivers. Photo courtesy: Ray Grant

MARTY SCHUSTER. A popular stock car racer from the late 1940s and through the 1950s, Schuster went on to develop a new off-road vehicle, organize an auxiliary police unit, and compete successfully as a bowler.

c.1969. Photo courtesy: Telegraph Herald

In 1968 Schuster began his dream of "duning." Similar to the California experience in sand dunes, the Tri-State area would offer off-road experiences with its own buggie. Schuster began the construction of a "brush buggie" at his home. Beginning with a '56 Buick, Schuster removed the body and took 32 inches out of the frame. Then he constructed a new body and used the same engine. (1)

c. 1969 Schuster in his "brush buggie." Photo courtesy: Telegraph Herald

After enjoying the ride through valleys and up the hills on his Diamond-S Ranch in Wisconsin, he began work on a race track--35 feet wide and one quarter-mile long. This led to the organization of the Mississippi Valley Brush Buggies--six individuals. By January 1969 there were eighty applications for membership. Rules were established including the fact that each person had to construct his own buggie. (2)

Stepping outside racing, Schuster was one of the organizers of the Dubuque Civil Defense Auxiliary Police. Formed in 1965 with six men, the unarmed unit was trained in the use of two-way radios and first aid. They proved themselves directing traffic at fires and floods. (3)

In 1960 he was listed among the city's best bowlers. (4)

1982 advertisement. Photo courtesy: Telegraph Herald

He revived his racing in 1982 at the Farley Raceway where he had raced in 1949.



1. White, John. "Hit the Brush!! The Buggie's Here," Telegraph-Herald, January 21, 1969, p. 4

2. Ibid.

3. White, John. "Civil Defense Auxiliary Police Wear Many Hats," Telegraph-Herald, June 1, 1969, p. 17

4. "The City's Best," Telegraph Herald, February 16, 1960, p. 5