Thursday, April 26, 2012

On to Washington D.C.

I visited one of my favorite sites: the American History Museum. Kermit the Frog, Dorothy's ruby slippers,and the famed Woolworth lunch counter are among our national treasures that were on display. I especially enjoyed the Transportation Movement exhibit which included a Chicago commuter rail car. Sit in the seats and watch a video of 1950's passengers getting on and off, and the conversation that ensues. Also of note: a hunk of Route 66 lined the walkway underfoot. There were lots of trains and classic cars (you'd have to ask my husband the models.)

But the predecessor of all the transportation movement, as we all know, was the bicycle.

Pardon the fuzzy photo.
There were two 1899 safety bicycles. The women's style was quite beautiful, full of shiny chrome. Of particular interest to me was how far we've come with the design and comfort of bikes, yet today women are taking to the step through frame again, especially for everyday life.

The men's drop bars are more narrow than conventional ones.

A 1950's Schwinn.

I did a double-take on this helmet—the only one on display. It's a 1977 Bell. I used this exact style in my teens. Anyone else recall this one?

6 comments:

  1. Interesting bikes! I would feel old to see one of my childhood relics in a museum, although it is a quite likely sight!

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  2. If you look at my archives on my blog from May 25, 2010, you'll see I took three of the very same pictures you did. Including the Bell helmet. I had the very same helmet, mine was a 1978 model. I heard, "Hey mushroom head!" yelled at me more than once from passing cars while wearing that helmet.

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    1. I'm glad you saw the same exhibit. The helmet display really hit home with me. I was the only teenager that I knew with a white bubble on my head.

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  3. Taking a look at the first picture of the lady with the bike makes all our modern angst over frame weight and cycling clothes for everyday use seem a little wimpy. I suddenly feel rather lucky to have the Surly :-)

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  4. When I compare my bike to these older models, I can't believe how much design has evolved. It's funny to see what people had back in the day though - I bet they thought it was awesome.

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