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Original Issue

Antique Motorcycles

A small but proud band of fans preserves some relics

As others before them during this second half-century of the motor age, motorcycle enthusiasts have suddenly awakened to the horrifying thought that the old bikes are fast passing from the scene. To assemble and preserve the remains of the legendary Indians, Scotts and Douglases, a tight little group has banded together in the Antique Motorcycle Club of America. They hold regional meets, exchange hard-to-get parts, share tips on ways to restore the old-timers and ponder glowingly their early history. The ancient Swallow Sidecar, they are proud to point out, was the honorable ancestor of the Jaguar car; the Flexi Sidecar sired Flexible (interstate) Coaches; the Pierce became the fabled Pierce Arrow automobile; and Glenn Curtiss, later to find fame in aviation, began his career turning out motorcycles.

Of recent vintage, eagerly sought Rudge Ulster road model is last of line made by the English wheel manufacturers.

Extinct model of surviving English make, Douglas was built to compete on Isle of Man, can do 100 miles per hour.

Unusual machine is 1914 water-cooled Scott. Nickel-plated radiator, leather-coated gas tank are set on open frame.

Unrestored bike, in exceptional condition for its age (circa 1910), was manufactured by future aviator Glenn Curtiss.

Smooth performer, four-cylinder 1909 Pierce Arrow was patiently rebuilt by a leading antiquarian, Henry Wing Sr.

Awkward stand Supports 1914 Hodgdon BSA. Belt drive placed machine 10 years behind superb, chain-driven Indian.