The beloved bicycle of today has come a long way from the first time it hit the streets in early 19th century.
In 1817 Germany, the concept of modern-day bicycle was born when steering was added to two wheels by inventor Karl Drais of Karlsruhe. This version was known as “Draisine” and did not boast of any chain, brakes, or pedals. Think of this being the inspiration behind the balance bike that are popularly used for training young kids. Though this version was clunky and heavy, it made Drais widely acknowledged as the father of the bicycle.
Many inventors continued to improve this early model and added adjustments they deemed suitable. First true bicycle invented by Ernest Michaux and Pierre Lallement, known as the “Velocipede” had crank and pedals but no brakes. Since the pedals were attached to front wheel without brakes, navigating the paths was still difficult. However, it bought cycling into mainstream. In 1885, Englishman John Kemp Starley build a design that featured equal-sized wheels and a chain drive. Further improvements in brakes and tires fuelled the design of bicycle which had started to become a cheap personal transport option.
In Australia, lot of riders were keen to establish cycling records by covering various parts of our vast continent on bicycle. You can read more about the “Trophy presented to Donald Mackay by Dux Bicycle Co” here. Such records helped establish the love that Australians have for this mobility vehicle.
In India, cycles were introduced by the British in early 1900’s. Though the initial uptake was slow, the bicycle got embraced by the general population in almost every city and town. In fact, cycling was introduced as a sport by mid 1930s. The Indian government later featured bicycles on Commemorative stamps on Asiad Games and Women Empowerment in 1990 and 2015, respectively.
The bicycle has been a symbol of technological and social progress since its early days and thus has captivated the imaginations of artists around the globe. In the modern world, fair trade organisations have leveraged our fascination with cycles into various home décor and kitchen items. This initiative helps provide education programs, health care, and an overall steady workflow for the artisans and functional beautiful items for the customer making it a win-win situation.
Items such as book ends, pizza cutter, ornaments are perfect for creating a unique industrial look and are loved by all whether cyclist or not.