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Update to a 2018 Post regarding 1st Schwinn Bicycle Catalog 1895

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Another update--- Thanks to a Cabe member here researching Schwinn literature...
and contacting the Smithsonian archives...
Suprisingly to me?

The below list is ALL the Smithsonian has in their 'vault' regarding the Schwinn co.
Kind of laughable if you ask me!


  • Fifty Years of Schwinn-Built Bicycles: The Story of the Bicycle and Its Contributions to Our Way of Life (book) – copyright 1945 by Arnold, Schwinn & Company
  • Schwinn Bicycle Service Manual (2 volumes) – copyright 1969, 1970
  • Schwinn Bicycles-Parts-Accessories (catalog) – circa 1950 (based on received date stamp)
  • Derailleur Lightweights: A New Dimension in Cycling by A. Fred DeLong (brochure) – undated but circa 1960s?
  • Schwinn: The World’s Finest Bicycles (brochure) – copyright 1964
  • Schwinn: America’s Favorite Bicycle (brochure) – copyright 1965
  • Schwinn Bicycles (brochure) – copyright 1969
  • Schwinn Hawaiian Holiday (brochure) – copyright 1971
 
It's been a while since I did any searches in the Library of Congress and not the easiest site to use. I'm wondering what it might hold though?
 
Bob, I do not want to derail your post.

Your findings really point out that this hobby needs to have an actual active place to collect , store, and sort all of the information. As we grow older, this information will be lost forever. Lots of guys have a little bit of this and that, combining the information makes for a very impressive resource.

John
 
The Veteran Cycle Club in the UK has a very good on-line archive, but obviously skewed towards European bikes. You do have to be a member, but it's cheap. The magazines are useful, but heavy on "ride reports" from meet ups.
 
Yeah, most museums have impressive buildings with a few really nice pieces in their collections, but what they all seem to have in common, is erroneous information.
Don’t believe every card you read in a museum.
It’ll give you a good place to start, but you’ll do better to do some of your own research.
It doesn’t surprise me at all, that the Smithsonian doesn’t have diddly squat when it comes to their Schwinn representation.
What did surprise me though, was that the Harley Davidson museum in Milwaukee, didn’t even have a nice original example of one of their Davis built bicycles in their collection.
They do have a comprehensive collection of all things H-D, but, come on guys!
You gotta step up that Davis built bike display.
They are not even good restorations.
Now, that was a surprise!
 
Bob, I do not want to derail your post.

Your findings really point out that this hobby needs to have an actual active place to collect , store, and sort all of the information. As we grow older, this information will be lost forever. Lots of guys have a little bit of this and that, combining the information makes for a very impressive resource.

John
Concur, John.
Aside from the collective brain-trust of individuals such as yourself @Schwinn Sales West, Bob Ujszaszi @bobcycles, etc., the deepest Schwinn archives reside with a very few individuals, e.g. Leon Dixon @NBHAA, Mark Mattei @Mark Mattei, and perhaps our very own Scott McCaskey @sm2501. Any y’all need a Nice Fat tax deduction? Wouldn’t hurt to have a dedicated Archivist to travel, collect, and record, as Alan Lomax did, to almost single-handedly assemble in one place the Archive of American Folk Song for the Library of Congress. He preserved for all time the likes of Leadbelly and Jelly Roll on Smithsonian Folkways. The bikes we collect are a fine legacy, so long as there survives an interest to preserve them. But will the currently scattered knowledge and physical archives be squirreled, and then frittered away at sequential estate sales to eventual oblivion ? Who will be our Alan Lomax ?
 
Concur, John.
Aside from the collective brain-trust of individuals such as yourself @Schwinn Sales West, Bob Ujszaszi @bobcycles, etc., the deepest Schwinn archives reside with a very few individuals, e.g. Leon Dixon @NBHAA, Mark Mattei @Mark Mattei, and perhaps our very own Scott McCaskey @sm2501. Any y’all need a Nice Fat tax deduction? Wouldn’t hurt to have a dedicated Archivist to travel, collect, and record, as Alan Lomax did, to almost single-handedly assemble in one place the Archive of American Folk Song for the Library of Congress. He preserved for all time the likes of Leadbelly and Jelly Roll on Smithsonian Folkways. The bikes we collect are a fine legacy, so long as there survives an interest to preserve them. But will the currently scattered knowledge and physical archives be squirreled, and then frittered away at sequential estate sales to eventual oblivion ? Who will be our Alan Lomax ?
I vote for you Pete. You need to juice the Sprinter and Buddy and you hit the road!
 
Concur, John.
Aside from the collective brain-trust of individuals such as yourself @Schwinn Sales West, Bob Ujszaszi @bobcycles, etc., the deepest Schwinn archives reside with a very few individuals, e.g. Leon Dixon @NBHAA, Mark Mattei @Mark Mattei, and perhaps our very own Scott McCaskey @sm2501. Any y’all need a Nice Fat tax deduction? Wouldn’t hurt to have a dedicated Archivist to travel, collect, and record, as Alan Lomax did, to almost single-handedly assemble in one place the Archive of American Folk Song for the Library of Congress. He preserved for all time the likes of Leadbelly and Jelly Roll on Smithsonian Folkways. The bikes we collect are a fine legacy, so long as there survives an interest to preserve them. But will the currently scattered knowledge and physical archives be squirreled, and then frittered away at sequential estate sales to eventual oblivion ? Who will be our Alan Lomax ?
Wow. I can sincerely hope that folks don't have the idea that after over 60 years of collecting, gathering, preserving and downright saving Classic Bicycle history from every company that made them that I would merely have "a little bit of this and a little bit of that"? That somehow National Bicycle History Archive of America is merely a little piddling personal collection? Or that we would be eclipsed in this regard by the silly Smithsonian? Which, by the way, we tried to get interested in CLASSIC BICYCLES back in the 1970s rather than their pre-1920 antiques? And (as one might expect) they blew us off (yes, we have letters).

Pitiful records of Schwinn Bicycle Company at the Smithsonian and Library of Congress are that way because nobody in these operations cared about anything newer than antique contraptions and pre-1920 stuff. Anything after that was unworthy in their eyes. Even when Smithsonian magazine finally decided to do something including bicycles after 1920, they fell in love with photos of very poor morphs, but flashy examples. Then paid me to consult, but then argued with me. Their magazine editor said that it was "impossible to get photos of accurate bicycles since finding the right parts was impossible and nobody knew what was right anyway..." They actually said this.

I personally started collecting the history of CLASSIC BICYCLES in the 1950s. Over 80,000 catalogues, books, photos and even bicycle movies isn't enough? Alan Lomax? REALLY?

• Who saved more Monark and Silver King literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Colson/Evans-Colson literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Shelby literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Manton & Smith literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Mead/Ranger literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Dayton/Huffman/Huffy literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Iver Johnson literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Cleveland Welding Company/Roadmaster/AMF literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Columbia/Westfield literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Sears Elgin/J.C. Higgins literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Montgomery Ward Hawthorne literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Murray-Ohio literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more H.P. Snyder and D.P. Harris/Rollfast literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Pierce Cycle literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Western Auto/Western Flyer literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Whizzer Motorbike Co. literature and artifacts than me? (and I've got a LOT more than anyone imagines).
• Who saved more Indian bicycle literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Harley-Davidson bicycle literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more orphan bicycle (including Bowden, Glideacycle, Ingo-Byke and others) literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Arnold, Schwinn & Co literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved more Gambles/Hiawatha literature and artifacts than me?
• Who saved the most history on New Departure, Morrow, Musselman, Bendix and other hubs (IN VOLUMES)?
• Who saved more bicycle FILMS (VINTAGE 16mm stuff) and related than me?
• Who wrote the first articles on CLASSIC BICYCLES and got them published in newspapers and magazines?
• Who started, wrote and published the very first newsletter on Classic Bicycles (made primarily in America 1920-1960s).
• Who appeared on radio and television beginning back in the 1970s with CLASSIC BICYCLES rather than antique contraptions?
• Who coined most of the terms like "sweetheart sprocket" people use today?
• Who located and interviewed most surviving key people from American bicycle companies in the 1970s and took the time and effort to actually interview them?
• Who saved and preserved the histories, the publications from the American bicycle industry trade magazines including American Bicyclist, Bicycle Journal and Bicycle Dealer Showcase and has kept the published volumes on hand, in storage to this very day?

I could go on. NBHAA has bicycle photos, games, films, catalogues, and books that go back to the 1860s.


There will already be someone to troll what I have stated here... to make fun of it and snipe at it. To somehow minimize it. This is the mentality of some who are attracted to this "hobby." The group makes and defines who it chooses to recognize and who it ignores and who it makes "important." But if there is a bigger, more complete, more comprehensive bicycle history archive owned by anyone, anywhere, I would certainly like to know about it.

Leon Dixon
National Bicycle History Archive of America
(NBHAA.com)

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Leon, your points are well taken, and your collection and archives are surely without equal. That is why you were the first person I mentioned when referencing the “deepest archives.” What a glaring omission for the Smithsonian to so completely overlook the classic American Bicycle. Probably just siloed in their stupid bubbles, like the rest of Washington. Their loss. For Cabers who have not visited your archives, it’s just a click away:
 
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