The Ultimate Cycle Chic
Wheel, kindly light, along life's cycle path, Wheel Thou on me! The road is rough, I have discerned Thy Wrath, But wheel me on! - Christian Hymn
Dedicated to the Restoration and Preservation of our Cycling Heritage
The Wheelmen embrace a broad range of bicycle-related activities, centered on the historical aspects of cycling.
Regular activities of the Wheelmen include riding in parades, tours and demonstrations, holding rides, participating in events to promote modern cycling, displaying bikes and memorabilia, research, writing and publishing cycle history, collecting bicycle literature and memorabilia, restoring cycles, restoring and recreating uniforms and costumes, recreating grand dance balls, picnics, developing buglers, show and tell meets, swap meets, auctions, slide shows, visiting historic sites and museums, and learning trick riding.
The Kentucky Wheelmen is a State Division of The Wheelmen, a national non-profit organization dedicated to keeping alive the heritage of American cycling, and promoting the restoration and riding of bicycles prior to1918. The Wheelmen relearn lost skills and tell old forgotten stories about the golden era of cycling.
Collectors and restorers have salvaged thousands of antique bicycles,and preserved large quantities of bicycle memorabilia, literature and other valuable materials of the early days of cycling. Many Wheelmen have built outstanding collections of cycles that rival the best of museums.
The club was founded in 1967 at Hoopes Reservoir, Wilmington, DE, at its first Official High Wheel Tour by 12 men mainly from the Philadelphia area.
Today the club has over one thousand members across the U.S., Canada and overseas.
Since our inception, the club has participated in major events such as the 1976 Bicentennial in Philadelphia, the 1982 World’s Fair in Knoxville, TN, and grand parades in New York, Detroit, Washington, Milwaukee and Indianapolis.
What’s So Special About The Kentucky Wheelmen?
Kentucky has a rich history in early cycling that has been lost or obscured through the years.
The Kentucky Wheelmen is a state division of The Wheelmen for members living in Kentucky. It is the goal of the Kentucky Wheelmen to bring back the glory days of early Kentucky cycling through the use of historic writings and research, recreations of the early cycle “runs”, commemorations of long gone bicycle race tracks, celebrations of talented Kentucky cyclists who became national and international cycling stars, and emphasizing the importance of Kentucky’s past as a National leader in cycling.
Wheelmen in Kentucky also participate in parades, demonstrate riding to the public, collect cycling memorabilia, and ride their machines.
More About Us
June 21st - 25th, 2013
Each year the Wheelmen club has an Annual Meet. It is when many Wheelmen worldwide come together, in one location, for a four-day celebration of antique cycling.
The 2013 Meet will take place in June in Louisville, Kentucky, for the first time.
The 2012 meet was held in Findlay, Ohio; other Annual Meets have been held in such historic places as Mystic Seaport, CT; Newport, RI; Auburn, IN; Niagara Falls, NY; Greenfield Village, Dearborn, MI; White River Junction, VT; and Williamsburg, VA, with hundreds of members in attendance at each meet.
KY Annual Meet Highlights:
Friday, June 21
Churchill Downs Horse Racing;
Youth Cycle Corp Practice;
Bicycle Stamp Postal exhibit;
Ice Cream Social
Saturday, June 22
Antique Bicycle Swap Meet;
Youth Cycle Corp Practice;
Executive Committee Meeting;
Highwheel Bicycle Parade to River and Retro Ride;
Group photograph with Rodin’s “Thinker” sculpture;
Louisville’s Cycling History Presentation with Joe Ward
Sunday, June 23
Century Day Rides;
New Albany Bicentennial Parade/Mansion Tours;
Old Louisville Walking Tour;
Annie “Londonerry” Kopchovsky documentary screening with Gillian Willman
Monday, June 24
Tim Meyer & David Herlihy Lectures;
Museums on W. Main St:
Tuesday, June 25
Bike Racing at Shawnee Park;
Churchill Downs Horse Racing
More Event Info
Join The Club
The club caters to the needs of all aspects of cycle history, collectors, non-riders, and riders of high wheels, tricycles, tandems and safety bicycles.
Men, women and children of all ages are welcome to participate in events throughout the year.
Wheelmen membership is open to everyone worldwide whether you own an antique bicycle or just enjoy the early days of our history when cycling was being born. Cycling history is an important part of our American heritage. We invite you to join us in reviving and reliving the memories of the 1880’s and 1890’s – the great cycling era in America.
Please consider becoming a member by downloading and printing the PDF application form, and mailing it in. Membership starts at $30 annually.