Photo: Velocipede and a motorcycle. Library of Congress.
*Copyright 2012. Not for redistribution without permission.
The following is taken from Burr, S. De Vere & Leng, Charles William. Bicycle and Motorcycle Repair. 1912. NY. The authors went into great detail about the workings of carburetors and other components and what charges were fair for various repairs. I did not reproduce all of that information due to its length. I have given the authors’ version of the earliest history of the motorcycle, and how it was operated at the time of publication.
In 1868, it is said, W. W. Austin, of Winthrop, Mass., brought out a velocipede, steam-propelled, in which a small coal-burning engine was used. The inventor claimed that he had ridden it over 2000 miles. Until the discovery of the Austin machine, the original American motorcycle was supposed to be a steam bicycle devised in 1884 by…
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