The Wheelmen are a national,
non-profit organization dedicated to keeping alive the heritage of
American cycling, promoting the restoration and riding of early cycles
manufactured prior to 1918, and encouraging cycling as part of modern living.
Members are intent on learning lost skills, retelling lost stories,
researching and writing of the golden era of cycling.
The Wheelmen embrace a broad range of bicycle-related activities,
centered on the historical aspects of cycling.
Such activities include riding in
parades, tours and demonstrations, holding rides, participating in
events to promote modern cycling, displaying bikes and memorabilia,
research, writing and publishing cycle history, collecting bicycle
literature and memorabilia, restoring cycles, restoring and recreating
uniforms and costumes, recreating grand dance balls, picnics, developing
buglers, show and tell meets, swap meets, auctions, slide shows,
visiting historic sites and museums, and learning trick riding.
Collectors and restorers have salvaged thousands of antique
bicycles and preserved large quantities of bicycle memorabilia,
literature and other valuable materials of the golden era of cycling.
Many Wheelmen have built outstanding collections of cycles that rival
the best of museums.
The club was founded in 1967 at Hoopes Reservoir, Wilmington, DE, at
it's first Official High Wheel Tour by 12 men mainly from the
Philadelphia area. Today the club has over one thousand members across
the U.S., Canada and overseas. Since our inception, the club has
participated in major events such as the 1976 Bicentennial in
Philadelphia, the 1982 World's Fair in Knoxville, TN, and grand parades
in New York, Detroit, Washington, Milwaukee and Indianapolis.
Each year the club has an Annual Meet. The Annual Meet is an activity
where many Wheelmen worldwide join together in one spot for a four-day
celebration of antique cycling. Annual Meets have been held in such
historic places as Mystic
Seaport, CT; Newport, RI; Auburn, IN; Niagara
Falls, NY; Greenfield Village, Dearborn, MI; White River Junction, VT;
and Williamsburg, VA, with hundreds of members in attendance. Ten-mile
tours on bicycles manufactured prior to 1918 are also held in conjunction with
Annual Meets as well as twenty-five and one-hundred-mile (century)
rides, bicycle games, uniform and costume judging, and bicycle
judging. Ribbons, certificates and medals are presented at most meets
for distance rides,games, races, uniform judging, and judging of
bicycles for original or restored condition.
The club has established a
constitution and by-laws, elected National Officers and State Captains,
and appointed Committee Chairmen. In addition to the Annual Meet, there
are many Wheelmen gatherings and activities throughout the year
sponsored by the various State Divisions that include many of the fore
mentioned activities and rides. Periodically, international tours are
organized for Wheelmen to attend other gatherings sponsored by the
International Veteran's Cycle Association.
The club caters to the needs of all aspects of cycle history, collectors,
non-riders, and riders of high wheels, tricycles, tandems and safety bicycles. Men,
women and children of all ages are welcome to participate in events throughout
the year. Wheelmen membership is open to everyone worldwide whether you own an
antique bicycle or just enjoy the early days of our history when cycling was being
born. Cycling history is an important part of our American heritage. We invite you
to join us in reviving and reliving the memories of the 1880's and 1890's
great cycling era in America.
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