Bicycle Literature Collecting

Bulletin #: 20
Prepared: 1973-06-01
Text by Cliff Miller list by Russell Mamone
Revised: 1994-01-01

What better way do we have of viewing the lives and times of the early bicyclers than through the books, magazines, and catalogs that they wrote for themselves and saved for us? Fortunately, they wrote a great deal and many of the books can still be found. The magazines and catalogs were less durable, were valued less when they were new, and in many cases the last copy may have been destroyed.

This bulletin will discuss what to look for, where to look, how to preserve the literature found, and how to share it with others.

What to look for will depend on what interests you most. The most useful historical tools for the identification and accurate restoration of cycles are the early catalogs. The early catalogs are hard to find and are usually expensive. Used book dealers sometimes have them. Also check with people selling automobile literature at flea markets. You can advertise in magazines that are read by collectors and restorers such as Hemmings Motor News, Antique Automobile, Cars and Parts, and various antique advertising newspapers. While looking for catalogs, you should look in the same places for magazines and books. They are less expensive and more enjoyable to read if you are not trying to trace the origin and restore an early cycle. You might also find an advertisement in an early magazine or book that would provide helpful information.

You can find dealers and searchers for antiquarian books listed in the Yellow Pages of some telephone directories. Not all used book dealers will ever have early bicycle books nor will they even know there is such a thing. Dealers who are most helpful will usually deal in middle priced and high priced books of some kind and are likely to be located near a university. They are also likely to participate in antiquarian book fairs.

You should ask dealers about upcoming antiquarian book fairs and plan on attending two or three a year. Let dealers know the types of books you are looking for and get your name and address on their want lists. Have some hobby cards printed and give them to book dealers and antique vendors to help them remember you when they find something.

As your library increases in size the need for cataloging the contents arises. You can develop inventory sheets listing the makes of cycles included in each publication, particularly the cycle dealers’ catalogs. Better still, you can develop a computerized inventory.

Old literature should be protected by keeping it dry and out of the light. A closed cabinet with shelves should be adequate for books, with the more fragile catalogs and magazines further protected in acid-free plastic or paper folders. Ordinary manila folders contain acid and will eventually damage paper stored in them. Paper should be stored in a room that is always dry and stays at a moderate temperature, never in an attic or a basement. If you have an important early book with a damaged binding, you should have it repaired by a good bookbinder. Bookbinders are usually located in university towns. Attempting to repair a book with tape will cause more damage.

A good way of sharing literature that you acquire is by sending a copy of your inventory sheets to The Wheelmen Librarian. These sheets are not for publication, but a member asking for information about a particular cycle will be put in touch with someone who may have the information and who will make a photocopy and send it at cost. The Wheelmen Librarian may ask for a photocopy of a catalog for the library so a copy can be made for someone who needs information.

Original copies of significant early books are difficult to find and are usually expensive when you find them. Some of the early books and catalogs have been reprinted and there are some fairly recent books that are good.

It would be worthwhile to start by looking for books identified with a bullet on the following list.

A Guide To Books On Bicycling - Prepared by Russell Mamone 1994

• Adams, Donald, Collecting & Restoring Antique Bicycles, 1981
• Alderson, Fred, Bicycling: A History, 1972
Algeo, Philippa, On Wheels!, 1986
Aligner, Hal, The Clear Creek Bicycle Book, 1972
Allen & Sachtleben, Across Asia on a Bicycle, 1894
Allen, J.H., Wheel Magic, 1909
Alth, Max, All About Bikes and Bicycling, 1972
Ballantine, Richard, Richard’s Bicycle Book, 1973
Bangs, John K., The Bicyclers & 3 Other Farces, 1896
Baranet, Nancy, Bicycling, 1973
Baranet, Nancy, The Turned Down Bar, 1964
• Bartleet, H.W., Bartleet’s Bicycle Book, 1931
Bauer, Fred, How Many Hills to Hillsboro?, 1969
Beekay Products, The George Moore Collection, 1979
Behrman, Daniel, The Man Who Loved Bicycles, 1973
• Berkebile & Oliver, Wheels & Wheeling, Smithsonian; 1974
Berkowitz, Allen, Greater Washington Area Bicycle Atlas, 1974
Birchmore, Fred, Around the World on a Bicycle, 1939
Blumenfield, R.D., In the Days of Bicycles and Bustles, 1913
Bowden, Frank, Cycling for Health & Points for Cyclists, 1913
Bowden, Gregory, The Story of the Raleigh Cycle, 1975
Bruton, J., The Velocipede - Its History & How to Use It, 1869
Burr, D.C., Bicycle Repairing, 1896
Burstyn, Bicycle Repair & Maintenance, 1977
Bury, Viscount, Hillier, G. Lacy, Cycling, 1887
C.O.N.I., Cycling, 1972
Cameron, Frank, On Tandems, 1989
Carter-Ruck, The Cyclist and The Law, 1953
Castlemon, Harry, The Steel Horse or the Rambles of a Bicycle, 1888
Caunter, C.F., The History & Development of Cycles, 1972
Chandler, Alfred, A Bicycle Tour in England & Wales, 1881
Clymer Publications, Fix Your Bicycle, 1972
Crowley, T.E., Discovering Old Bicycles, 1973
Crushton, History of the Pickwick Bicycle Club, 1905
Cuthbertson, Tom, Anybody’s Bike Book, 1971
Cuthbertson, Tom, Bike Tripping, 1972
Dalton, Lycra Bicyclica: Sixty Poets On The Wheel, 1885
Davies, Tom, Merlyn & the Magician & the Pacific Coast Highway, 1982
de Saunier, L. Baudry, Histoire Generale de La Velocipede, 1891
de Saunier, L. Baudry, Le Cyclisme-Theorique et Pratique
de Saunier, Dollfus, Geoffroy, Histoire de la Locomotion Terrestre, 1935
Delong, Fred, Guide to Bicycles & Bicycling, 1974
Duncan, H.O., World on Wheels, 1926, 2 Vols.
Duncan, John, Bikes and Trikes of Long Ago, 1975
Duker, Peter, Coppi, 1982
Earl of Albemarle, Cycling, Badminton Library, 1896
Evans, David, The Ingenious Mr. Pedersen, 1978
Ewers, William, Sincere’s Bicycle Service Book, 1971
Fabre, Maurice, History of Land Transportation
Fisk & Todd, The Wright Brothers from Bicycle To Biplane, 1990
Foster, Conant, Wheel Songs, 1884
Fraser, J.F., Round the World on a Wheel, 1899
Garratt, A.A., The Modern Safety Bicycle, 1899
Geist, R.C., Bicycle People, 1978
Geist, R.C., Bicycling as a Hobby, 1940
Griffin, Harry Hewitt, Bicycles & Tricycles of the Year 1889
Griffin, Harry Hewitt, Cycling, 1890
Hammerton, J.A., Mr. Punch Awheel
Hasluck, P.N., Cycle Building & Repairing, 1904
Hoffman, Professor, Tips for Tricyclists, 1887
Hope, Laura Lee, The Bobbsey Twins on a Bicycle Trip, 1958
Hornung, Clarence, Wheels Across America, 1959
Houston, Jack, Wandering Wheels, 1970
Hubcycle & Radio Co., 45th Anniversary Scrapbook, 1942
Iliffe & Son, Romances of the Wheel, 1880
Jerome, Jerome K., Three Men on Wheels, 1900
Jerome, Jerome K., Humor of Cycling, 1905
Johnson, Barbara Mary, Pilgrim on a Bicycle, 1982
Kendall, Walter, Four Score Years of Sport, 1933
Kingbay & Fisher, Bicycling, 1974
• Kobayashi, Keizo, Histoire du Velocipede de Drais a Michaux 1817-1870, Mythes et Realites, 1994
• Kron, Karl, Ten Thousand Miles on a Bicycle, 1887
Leek, Sybil & Stephen, The Bicycle, That Curious Invention, 1973
Leete, H.H., The Best of Bicycling, 1972
Leng, Charles W., Bicycle & Motorcycle Repairing, 1912
Leonard, I.A., When Bikehood Was In Flower, 1969
Lightwood, James T., The Romance of the Cyclists Touring Club, 1928
Loher, George T., The Wonderful Ride, 1960
McCullagh, James, American Bicycle Racing, 1976
McFarlane, J.W., It’s Easy to Fix your Bicycle, 1976
McGonagle, S., The Bicycle in Life, Love, War & Literature, 1969
• McGurn, James, On Your Bicycle, 1987
MeGredy & Wilson, The Art & Pastime of Cycling, 1893
MeGredy & Wilson, Cycling for Ladies, 1893
Messenger, Chas., Conquer the World, 1971
Monroe, Lynn, Boneshakers & Other Bikes, 1974
Murphy, Dervla, Full Tilt, 1965
Niquette, Paul, A Certain Bicyclist, 1987
Nye, Peter, Cyclists Sourcebook, 1991
Nye, Peter, Hearts of Lions, 1989
Oakley, William, Winged Wheel, 1977
Oliver, Catalog of the Smithsonian Cycle Collection, 1953
Opperman, Hubert, Pedals, Politics & People, 1977
• Palmer, A.J., Riding High, 1956
Patterson, A.B., Mulga Bill’s Bicycle, 1973
Patterson, Frank, The Frank Patterson Picture Book, 1978
Pennell, Elizabeth, Over the Alps on a Bicycle, 1898
Pennell, Joseph & Elizabeth, A Canterbury Pilgrimage, 1885
Pennell, Joseph & Elizabeth, Our Journey to the Hebrides, 1889
Pennell, Joseph & Elizabeth, Our Sentimental Journey, 1888
Pennell, Joseph & Elizabeth, To Gypsyland, 1893
Pennell, Joseph & Elizabeth, Two Pilgrims Progress, 1886
Phillips, Walter, Song of the Wheel, 1897
Porter, Luther H., Cycling for Health & Pleasure, 1896
Porter, Luther H., How to Tour by Wheel, 1896
Pratt, Charles, The American Bicycler, 1879
• Rauck, Max, Gerd Volke, and Felix R. Paturi, Mit dem Rad durch zwei Jahrhunderte, 1979
Ray, Alan, Cycling Lands End to John O’Groats, 1971
Ray, H.A., Curious George Rides a Bike, 1952
Rennert, Jack, 100 Years of Bicycle Posters, 1973
• Ritchie, Andrew, King of the Road, 1975
Ritchie, Andrew, Major Taylor, 1988
Roberts, Derek, The Invention of Bicycles & Motorcycles, 1975
Rodoni, Adriano, Coni, Cycling, 1971
Ruck, & Mackrill, The Cyclist & the Law, 1953
• Schwinn, Frank, 50 Years of Schwinn Built Bicycles, 1945
Science Museum, Cycle History & Development (England), 1955
Scott, Robert P., Cycling Art, Energy and Locomotion, 1889
• Seray, Jacques, Deux Roues, La Veritable Histoire Du Velo, 1988
• Sharp, Archibald, Bicycles & Tricycles, 1896
Shaw, Reginald, Let’s Go Cycling, 1950
Shaw, Reginald, Teach Yourself Cycling, 1953
Simpson, Tommy, Cycling in My Life, 1966
Siple, Greg, The Mighty TOSRV, 1986
Sisley, C.P., The Lady Cyclist, 1895
Sloane, Eugene, The New Complete Book of Bicycling, 1974
• Smith, Robert, Social History of the Bicycle, 1972
Smith, Ken, The Canadian Bicycle Book, 1972
Spaulding Library, Hints on Cycling, 1889
St. Pierre, Roger, The Book of the Bicycle, 1973
Starrs, James, The Noiseless Tenor, 1982
Stephens, C.A., Knockabout Club, 1881
Stevens, Thomas, Around the World on a Bicycle, 1887
Stockton, Frank R., A Bicycle of Cathay, 1900
Sturmey, Henry, The Indispensible Handbook to the Safety Bicycle, 1885
Sturmey, Henry, The Tricyclists Indispensable Annual, 1883
Sudbury, R.F., The Bicycle & the Postage Stamp, 1977
Summer, Phillip, Early Bicycles , 1966
Swann, Dick, Bert Harris, 1964
Swann, Dick, Days of Davies, 1968
Swann, Dick, Life & Times of Charley Barden, 1965
Tate, Henry, Bicycle Yarns, 1899
Taylor, Major, The Fastest Bicycle Rider in the World, 1928
Teresi, Dick, Book of Bikes & Bicycling, 1975
Triffault, Mark, Bicycles Digest, 1973
UCLA Earth Action, The Bicycling Book, 1971
Wagenvoord, James, Bikes and Riders, 1972
Ward, N.W., Bicycling for Ladies, 1896
Ward, Peter, King of Sports
Way, John, Cycling Manual, 1967
Way, John, The Bicycle: A Guide & Manual, 1973
Wells, H.G., The Wheels of Chance, 1928
Whiter, Robert, The Bicycle Manual on Maintenance & Repair, 1974
• Whitt, Frank and David Wilson, Bicycling Science, 1982
Whitt, Frank and David Wilson, Bicycling Science, Ergonomics & Mechanics, 1974
• Wijzer, Een Eeuw, Toeristenbond ANWB 1883-1983, 1983
Wiley, Jack, The Bicycle Builders Bible, 1980
Wiley, Jack, The Unicycle Book, 1973
Wilkinson, Robert, Cycles in Color, 1978
Willard, F.E., A Wheel Within a Wheel, 1895
Williamson, Geoffrey, Wheels Within Wheels
Winder, Tom, Around The United States By Bicycle, 1895
Woodforde, John, The Story of the Bicycle, 1971
Woodland, Les, Cycle Racing—Training to Win, 1975
Workman, Fanny & William, Sketches Awheel in Fin de Siecle Iberia, 1900
Workman, Fanny & William, Algerian Memories, 1895
Wray, Fitzwater, The Kuklos Papers, 1924
Young, Jim & Elizabeth, Bicycle Built for Two, 1940
Zimmerman, A.A., Zimmerman on Training with Points for Cyclists, 1891

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