Peddling Bicycles to America: The Rise of an Industry

Author(s): Bruce D. Epperson

Date: Format: PDF Language: English ISBN/ASIN: 078644780X
Pages: OCR: Quality: ISBN13:
Uploader: Upload Date: 12/30/2018 4:11:02 AM

This economic and technical history of the early American bicycle industry focuses on the period from 1876 to the beginning of World War I. It looks particularly at the life and career of the industry’s most significant personality during this era, Albert Augustus Pope.

After becoming enamored with English high-wheeled bicycles during a visit to the Philadelphia World’s Fair in 1876, Pope soon started paying Hartford, Connecticut’s Weed Sewing Machine Company to make his own brand of high-wheeler, the "Columbia," the first to be manufactured in America in significant numbers. A decade later, Pope bought out that company, and a decade after that, Hartford’s Park River was lined with five of Pope’s factories. This book tells the story of the Pope Manufacturing Company’s meteoric rise and fall and the growth of an industry around it.