MELBOURNE "MIKE" & MARGARET WILSON
Hall of Fame Inductee – 2011
While it’s true that Mike and Margaret Wilson both have made significant individual contributions to the sport of motorcycling and the motorcycle lifestyle, just about anyone who you talk to will tell you that they’re a pair. We celebrate their contributions – both as a couple and as individuals.
Melbourne “Mike” Wilson started racing when he was 19 in 1939, but his race career was put on hold when he was called to active duty. He served in World War II as a fighter pilot, then returned to his bride Margaret after the war. He purchased her a new 1946 Harley-Davidson motorcycle upon his return, and Margaret’s love affair with motorcycling began in earnest.
In 1950, the couple opened the Harley-Davidson dealership in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, which they operated for the next 25 years. Even while running the dealership, Mike continued to race – he raced as an expert-licensed dirt track racer winning the Iowa TT State Championship in 1956. He was the last racer to enter the Peoria TT race aboard a 74-cubic-inch Harley-Davidson in 1958.
While Mike was busy racing, Margaret was making a name for herself in the world of motorcycling, too. She is a 60 year Golden Life Member of the Motor Maids, having joined in 1951. She has served as an Iowa district director for the club. One of Margaret’s proudest moments was when she was voted America’s Most Popular and Typical Girl Rider in 1958 by all the clubs in the American Motorcycle Association.
In recent years, Mike & Margaret have turned much of their attention to promoting and preserving the heritage of motorcycling. Mike & Margaret both serve on the Board of Directors of the Motorcycle Hall of Fame Museum in Pickerington, Ohio and are among that museum’s principal benefactors.