Lindwalls sold cars for 108 years
Lew Lorenzoni (left) and Ed Lindwall manned a table at the recent Iron County Business Expo. Lorenzoni and his father Bob, owners of Stateline, purchased Lindwall Motors in December and will now operate their business on both sides of Iron County.
IRON RIVER—The birth of a new auto dealership in Iron River also involves the death of a century-old business. It’s the story of a family that has been serving the Iron River area since before any of you were even born.
That history began in 1908 when J.E. Lindwall began selling cars from a business located near the present-day Northland Service building on Genesee Street. He sold E-M-F vehicles—the name came from the initials of its founders. They were sold through dealers of Studebaker wagons.
“The cars came on crates on the trains,” said Ed Lindwall, grandson of the dealership’s founder, “and they had to assemble them here. Final assembly right in Iron River!”
But while E-M-F cars were only sold until 1912, when Studebaker took over, Lindwall Motors stayed in the car business all through the years—until Dec. 21, 2016, when Ed Lindwall signed papers turning over the dealership to Stateline Chevrolet of Crystal Falls.
“Stateline had been asking about it for a while,” Lindwall said in a recent interview. “They’re a father-son, local business, which is a nice combination. It made sense, I think, for both of us to do this. Nice timing for everybody.”
A new name but the same heritage. Bob and Lew Lorenzoni have been in the business for many years. It’s still going to be a family business. Just a different family.
“With this long heritage,” Lindwall said, “we have a wonderful community and customers who have been good to us. And our employees.” For the most part, Lindwall employees were picked up by Stateline. “They kept everybody basically in place.”
After E-M-F closed, Lindwall Motors soon became Lindwall-Lindstrom Ford during the 1910s and ‘20s. In time, Lindwall sold out to Lindstrom, which remained Iron River’s Ford dealer for