Cycling Eighty Years Ago

David Rubinstein describes a change in social habits when the new bicycle replaced the old Penny Farthing.

Two gentlemen ride penny-farthings in Los Angeles, 1886. The current revival of cycling may well draw inspiration from an exciting past. In March 1896 the Queen reported: ‘On a fine morning in Hyde Park a couple or three thousand masters of the wheel may be seen flying to and fro along the northern bank of the Serpentine.’

Less than two months later George R. Sims, the famous author of ‘In the Workhouse: Christmas Day,’ noted in his column in the Referee’. ‘The bicycle movement is assuming dimensions undreamt of even by the most sanguine supporters of the wheel.’

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