When the first diamond frame bicycles became popular in the 1890s they were often called "wheels" - the national cycling association was called the "League of American Wheelmen." We have moved from "wheels" to "bikes," but the bicycles have remained remarkably the same over more than 100 years - elegant in their efficiency and simplicity. And many of the issues that we think are new? They were around then too.
Saturday, July 23, 2016
Some Grim Cyclists From 1896
Title: The Donaldson bicycle lithos for the season of 1896
Creator(s): Donaldson Lith. Co., lithographer
Date Created/Published: Cincinnati : Donaldson Litho Co., [ca. 1896]
Medium: 1 print ; chromolithograph ; 28 9/16 x 42 1/4 in.
Reproduction Number: LC-DIG-ppmsca-08976 (digital file from original print)
Rights Advisory: No known restrictions on publication.
Call Number: PGA - Donaldson--Donaldson bicycle lithos... (E size) [P&P]
Repository: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.
This is a poster advertising the lithographic services of the Donaldson Company in 1896. The riders depicted are noteworthy for their grim expressions. Or perhaps just determined.
Some of these sorts of posters on the Library of Congress web site were digitized from film reproductions, not from the original, and the color is often not quite right and they are otherwise not great. Good, but not great. This however was more recently digitized from the original item which is 42+ inches across, so it is a pretty nice digital reproduction. Not so noticeable perhaps from the JPEG I copied from the LOC.gov site, but there is a high resolution TIFF image there you can download if you want (which is 58.7 mb).
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