Bobcat celebrates 500,000th skid-steer loader

Bobcat celebrated its 500,000th skidsteer on Feb. 14th, 2001 at its Gwinner, N.D. plant.

The skidsteer originated when a Minnesota farmer needed a loader to work in the tight confines of a turkey barn. Two blacksmith brothers, Cy and Louis Keller, created a small machine to meet the farmer's needs. The Melroe brothers, of Gwinner, ND, bought the rights, refined the machine and introduced the Melroe Self-Propelled Loader in 1958, a 2-wheel drive unit.

The Melroes added front wheel drive and introduced the first true skidsteer, the M-400 in 1960, and the "Bobcat" name was added in 1962 to the M-444 model.

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