Donations are always appreciated. To make a tax-deductible donation to the museum click the "Donate" Button.



General Admission (per person)


Seniors (60+, AAA Members).................$7.00

Group (12-19) or Military.......................$6.00

Group (20 or more)...............................$4.00

Students (ages 6-17)............................$4.00

Children under 5 years old......................FREE


Museum Hours

Open Spring, Summer, and Fall Season

Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Closed Sunday and Monday

Gift Certificates Available


Winter Season

Closed to the general public

January 1st thru March 31st and will

reopen on Tuesday April 5th.

During Winter Season, Tour Groups of 20 or more people may be scheduled by calling

(260) 768-3021 between 8am and 5pm.


Hostetler’s Hudson Auto Museum

Located within the Shipshewana Event Center

760 S. Van Buren Street

Shipshewana, Indiana 46565

Ph: (260) 768-3021

Fax: (260) 768-3023



If you wish to contribute in other ways click here to find out how.

© Hostetler’s Hudson Auto Museum 2013

﷯A DRIVING PASSION﷯ Growing up on a 280-acre Amish farm near Shipshewana, Indiana, young Eldon Hostetler was always fascinated by the automobiles that cruised up and down the country roads near his home. When Eldon’s neighbor, Ervin Yoder, returned from a trip out west driving a two-tone brown, four-door 1936 Hudson Terraplane, Hostetler was instantly captivated by the sheer beauty of the automobile and was fascinated by the innovative “Electric Hand Shift” that sat just below the steering wheel. This fascination that would later become a driving passion in Hostetler’s life led to the pursuit of “everything Hudson.” HOW I GOT INTERESTED IN HUDSON CARS Written by Eldon and Esta Hostetler on August 17, 2005 I grew up near Shipshewana, Indiana, on the Pashan Farm. Pashan was a small town with a General Store and a Post Office before Shipshewana had one. It was a large farm of 280 acres. In 1936, a local Amish boy left the area for Texas to follow the wheat harvest north. I was 14 years old at this time. Dad had many young men help with the corn harvest in the fall. He did not expect Ervin Yoder to return in time to help with the corn harvest. But one day soon after the start, he (Ervin) dropped in with a new 1936 Hudson Terraplane, four-door sedan, tan in color with semi-automatic shifting next to the steering wheel. I was allowed to drive this car several times to go from farm to farm. With this automatic shifting, it was “big time stuff” as far as I was concerned. All other cars had shift levers off the floor. You had to be 18 years old before you could get a driver’s license. Those were four long years for me. However, when I turned 18 in 1940, I purchased a used 1938 Hudson with the same shifting setup. My Amish grandfather loaned me $350.00 to buy this car if I promised not to tell Mother he did this. I kept this promise. I drove Hudsons until they merged with Nash and have driven mostly Chryslers since. I have had good fortune in my life, which made it possible to collect old Hudson cars. My wife, Esta, suggested I get into a hobby to divert some of my energy. She had also been taught to drive in a Hudson car. This is how and why we got started collecting the ones we drove at first. However, when we went back into older models, it got very interesting. Hudson had many different model cars for sale with many by many different coach builders. We were lucky to find many of these that needed restoration and did this to bring them back for display. Today, we have 48 unusual Hudson, Essex, Terraplane, Railton, and Dover brand cars and trucks. Hudson merged with Nash late 1954, and this merger became American Motors, Inc. they made big cars for three years and then put all sales and production into the Rambler models. In August 1992, we purchased the first eight acres of land, and in August 1997, an additional 10 next to it. The plans were to put a museum on this land for the tourists to see when coming to the Flea Market. When we became aware of the museum tax problem in the State of Indiana, we started to look at other options. We found that a 501(c)3 setup is the only way this can be done. However, when done this way, the project belongs to the community and managed by a local board. In December 1997, before Christmas, we told our six children that we spoke to Norm Kaufmann, Shipshewana Town Manager, and asked him if the town would consider building a complex for the car collection if we would donate the cars and our 18 acres of land to place it on. We would also put up an endowment for operation. Shipshewana already had 501c3 status. They agreed to keep the cars together during our lifetime. EldonHostetler Esta M.Hostetler Today, the collection donated by Eldon and Esta Hostetler resides at the Shipshewana Town Center, the 60,000-square-foot auto museum, convention, and special event center in the heart of Shipshewana.

Eldon Hostetler

December 25, 1922 - January 8, 2016

Eldon Hostetler, 93, of Middlebury, died at 6:35 pm on Friday, January 8, at the Maples at Waterford Crossing, Goshen. He had been staying there since a fall on December 14.He was born on December 25, 1922 in LaGrange County, to Mahlon D. and Lizzie D. (Schrock) Hostetler.  On September 10, 1944 in Middlebury he married Edna Yoder; she died April 22, 1977. On April 8, 1978 in Goshen he married Esta Yoder; she survives. Survivors in addition to his wife are three daughters, Mary Etta Yoder of Palmetto, FL, Ruby (Marvin) Wittmer of Goshen, LeAnn (Lamar) Hochstetler of Nappanee; three sons, Dale (Sharon Anderson) Hostetler of Union, MI, Robert (Angelika) Hostetler of Granger, Eldon Jr. (Pauline) Hostetler of Goshen; 10 grandchildren, 12 great grandchildren, six step great grandchildren, three step great-great grandchildren; five sisters, Ida Frey of Ligonier, Orpha Miller of Shipshewana, Lizzie Ann (Mervin) Lehman of Topeka, Freida (Mahlon) Raber of Middlebury, Leah Fern Hostetler of Shipshewana; two brothers,  Daniel Hostetler of Shipshewana, LaVern Hostetler of Anderson.  He was preceded in death by his first wife, parents, four sisters, Nina Hostetler, Anna Miller, Mary Etta Eash, Mabel Mast, brother, David Hostetler. Eldon began his working career in 1944 at Creighton Brothers in Warsaw. He was passionate about developing equipment to make work easier for the farmers. He then went to work at Lambright Hatchery in LaGrange; while there his hobby developed a new crossbred chicken with larger breast meat. He later worked

for Chore Time in Milford for 20 years; while there he invented the centerless auger feeding system which greatly expanded their business. In 1977 he started Ziggity Systems in Middlebury where they specialize in watering systems for poultry. He retired in 2007.  For 35 years Eldon was passionate about collecting and restoring Hudson automobiles. He was very interested in the history of the Hudson and the impact it had on the automotive industry and the economy. In 2005 Eldon donated land, a building and endowment

fund to start the Hostetler’s Hudson Auto Museum, building the largest  collection of rare and unusual Hudsons. He also enjoyed collecting different  antiques. He was a member of the North Goshen Mennonite Church, the  Indiana/Ohio Hudson Club, Antique Auto Club of America and the Classic Car Club of America. Visitation will be from 4:00 - 8:00 pm on Wednesday January 13, and 2:00 - 4:00 and 6:00 - 8:00 pm Thursday, January 14, at Miller-Stewart Funeral Home, 1003 South Main Street Middlebury. Family and friends may

gather at 9:30 am on Friday January 15 for a graveside service at Violett Cemetery, Goshen. A Celebration of Life service will follow at 11:00 am at the North Goshen Mennonite Church. Services will be conducted by Pastor Mark Schloneger. Memorials may be given to Cancer Society of Elkhart County.