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Bicycles in Historic Detroit

Posted Oct 15 2009 10:04pm
Trisha of Let's Go Ride a Bike did a post today featuring historic pictures of Nashville that showed bicycles in the city around the turn of the 20th century. She found the photos on a site called Shorpy.com.

She inspired me to do a search on Shorpy for Detroit and see if I could find any bikey goodness. There were rail cars, motor cars, hand carts, even horses and buggies in a lot of the street pictures, but bikes were few and hard to find. It seems that Detroit has truly been the "Motor City" since the days of Henry Ford himself.

I did find a couple cool bike shots that I thougth I'd share. The first is a picture of the Majestic Building around 1890.


I had to zoom way in to the full sized view to find the bicycles, but they're in there!


I also found this cute picture of a little boy from the 1960's in his cowboy costume riding his trusty red tricycle steed. Then I realized this photo is from California, but I thought I'd include it here anyway. I like the bright red wagon, the yellow hat and the blue sky.


I wonder if the city of Detroit or its suburbs have seen more bike riders. As a native of Redford Township, a suburb bordering Detroit to the west, I would guess that the suburbs had more bike traffic - mostly kids getting to friends' houses and summer jobs. But even in Redford it was incredibly rare to see someone cycling on a main road.

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