Pope Columbia Safety Bicycle, 1889

Summary

New "safety" bicycles, like this Pope Columbia, touched off a bicycle craze in the 1880s and 1890s. More stable with two same-sized wheels and less expensive than the high-wheeled "ordinaries," safety bicycles allowed many Americans to discover the sheer joy of riding.

New "safety" bicycles, like this Pope Columbia, touched off a bicycle craze in the 1880s and 1890s. More stable with two same-sized wheels and less expensive than the high-wheeled "ordinaries," safety bicycles allowed many Americans to discover the sheer joy of riding.

Artifact

Bicycle

Date Made

1889

Keywords

Bicycles 

Driving America
 On Exhibit

at Henry Ford Museum in Driving America

Object ID

32.1022.1

Credit

From the Collections of The Henry Ford.

Material

Metal
Rubber (Material)
Chromium
Leather

Color

Black (Color)

Dimensions

Height: 46 in

Width: 28.5 in

Length: 73.5 in

Wheelbase: 43.75 in

Specifications

Make & Model: Pope Columbia Safety bicycle, 1889

Maker: Pope Manufacturing Company, Hartford, Connecticut

Speeds: 1

Brakes: rear-wheel handle brake

Weight: 51 pounds

Price: $135

Average 1889 wage: about $438

Time you'd work to buy this bicycle: about 4 months

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