Category Archives: Articles

1897 CYCLING WORLD ILLUSTRATED

RIDE VINTAGE online magazine 1

1896 CYCLING WORLD ILLUSTRATED

RIDE VINTAGE online magazine 1

Some wise people say that corsets should be discarded for cycling. That is not correct. There should be no approach to tight lacing, but a pair of woollen-cased corsets afford great support; they keep the figure from going all abroad, and protect the vital parts from chills. Special woollen-cased corsets are made by at any rate two manufacturers, who have spared no pains to provide a safe and good corset for cyclists.

It is essential to have well-cut knickerbockers in lieu of skirts. They can be obtained at most ladies’ tailors, the price running to about £1. It is best to have them lined with leather as for riding on horseback. They should be made to buckle at the knee, but loosely – no tight bands are allowed in cycling. In the same way, suspenders should invariably be used to secure the stockings.

Lady Cycling: What to Wear & How to Ride, by Miss F.J Erskine, page 11

cycling costumes 1890s

RIDE-VINTAGE-online-magazine-2

RIDE-VINTAGE-online-magazine-2

BICYCLING FOR LADIES

EMANCIPATION: SUFFRAGE & CYCLING

Bicycling for Ladies

PLEASE CLICK HERE

http://www/oldbike.eu/emancipation

oldbike_museum

1896 OVERLAND MAGAZINE: ADVERTISING POSTERS

RIDE VINTAGE online magazine 1

THE ADVERTISER and the POSTER

There has been renewed interest in the past ten years in the wonderful advertising posters of the 1890s. This July 1896 issue of Overland Monthly magazine provides some background to the subject.

1896 MUNSEY: THE WORLD AWHEEL

RIDE VINTAGE online magazine 1

The LINOTYPE is to the printing business of the present day what the inventions of Guttenberg and Caxton were to the primitive writing systems of the fifteenth century. It raises the unit of type-setting from a letter to a line. Hence its name (line-o’-type). Six years ago it was declared to be ‘one of the most remarkable machines ever invented,’ and the Right Hon. W.E. Gladstone said: ‘It is a machine for which I cannot but anticipate effects equally extensive and beneficial to mankind.’

– Brighton Society, Dec 1896

1886 was not only an important year for bicycle design – the first safety bike – but this year also saw the introduction of the Linotype printing machine. By the 1890s, magazines could be produced efficiently and cheaply.

 

In 1895, the American Cosmopolitan magazine threw down the gauntlet to its competitors and slashed its price to a dime. Other magazines had no choice but to follow suit. Circulation boomed as a result, and this kick-started the advertising industry as we know it today. These three industries, bicycle manufacturing, magazine production and advertising, came of age together, this ‘industrial revolution’ of the 1890s creating the consumer society we know today.

RIDE-VINTAGE-online-magazine-2

MUNSEY MAGAZINE: THE BICYCLE NUMBER

A favourite subject for 1890s magazines was the new craze of cycling. In the early days, it was an expensive pastime; so, just as magazines today focus on the rich and famous, reports on the hobby revealed to ordinary folk what the upper classes were getting up to. As cycling became more affordable, there was an increase in practical articles, with much debate about female riding outfits.

The May 1896 issue of Munsey Magazine – ‘The Bicycle Number’ – is the most comprehensive report of the period, providing an informative view of cycling in the mid-1890s, as well as a potted history of cycling, elegant photos and illustrations, and quaint suggestions for the improvement of cycling, such as (my favourite) a ‘rapid transit’ elevated cycle path, above.

 

 

RIDE-VINTAGE-online-magazine-2

LORD & THOMAS ADVERTISING AGENCY


Lord and Thomas was founded in Chicago in 1873. Later to become FCB, it was the world’s third oldest advertising agency. Albert Lasker, a founding figure of modern advertising, went to work for the firm as a clerk in 1898, working his way up until he purchased it in 1912. Chicago and New York were the centres of the advertising industry. As head of the Lord and Thomas agency, Lasker – known as ‘the father of modern advertising’ – devised a copywriting technique that appealed directly to the psychology of the consumer. Women seldom smoked cigarettes; he told them if they smoked Lucky Strikes they could stay slender. Lasker’s use of radio, particularly with his campaigns for Palmolive soap, Pepsodent toothpaste, Kotex products, and Lucky Strike cigarettes, not only revolutionized the advertising industry but also significantly changed popular culture.

RIDE-VINTAGE-online-magazine-2

RIDE-VINTAGE-online-magazine-2

Skirt Holders, as mentioned above and below, were just one of the interesting details of female costume in the early days of cycling.

To read more when you’ve finished these pages, please visit the website

EMANCIPATION: Bicycling for Ladies

PLEASE CLICK HERE

http://www/oldbike.eu/emancipation

 emancipation_cycle_museum

RIDE-VINTAGE-online-magazine-2

1895 OVERLAND MAGAZINE: A MODERN CENTAUR

RIDE VINTAGE online magazine 1

 

 

aug1895_Overland_modern_centaur_2 copy

 

People that have never attempted to ride a wheel, but can hold themselves pretty well on a horse, sometimes burst out that it is not artistic, and that it looks like a mechanical monkey. A bicycle rider looks as trim as a horseman. His body tightly enclosed in a woolen sweater of good quality and pattern, a loose fitting coat trimmed with braid, a pair of knickerbockers, not too baggy, and heavy woolen stockings that fit well, a pair of low shoes and a cap to match the colour of the coat; strong riding gloves are sure to add to the beauty of this costume. A belt is sometimes worn and gives a sort of military look to the wearer.

The ladies have taken up riding with a zest. Their costumes differ but little from those of the male rider, and many are certainly very becoming. Riding a bicycle is not more injurious than running a sewing machine. It certainly strengthens the muscles, and the little over exertion performed by the legs is more than counter-balanced by the good results arising from exercise in the open air.

Many persons are afraid to try to ride a bicycle, thus depriving themselves of this agreeable exercise. It is far less difficult to ride, than it is to gather courage to try it.

Language evolves constantly, with each generation adding to our vocabulary. I enjoy the flourish of 1890s language, itself emboldended by a new-found freedom of expression as magazines became widely available for the first time. With so many new journals, ordinary folks started to write articles, many sharing their cycling experiences. This 1895 article tells us the story of cycling’s evolution.

 

RIDE-VINTAGE-online-magazine-2

OVERLAND MAGAZINE, August 1895

A MODERN CENTAUR: A Chapter on Bicycles