Scientific American has unearthed an amazing bit of bike history from their archives that shows the popularity of fixed-gear freestyle is nothing new.
In a blog post on Friday, the magazine shared images from an article they ran in 1899 featuring “two well-known trick riders,” N.C. Kaufman of Rochester, NY and Lee Richardson of Milwaukee, WI. As I looked at the images, I was struck by how similar Mr. Kaufman’s moves were to what I’ve seen by some of our local trick riders.
As I’ve shared in stories from 2010 and in 2008, urban trick riding is alive and well in Portland; but I never would have expected that these young riders were simply carrying on a proud tradition started in the 19th century!
Check out the similarities between Portlander Ben Ficklin in the photo below from 2008…
And a photo of Mr. Kaufman from 1899…
I guess this puts the whole, “Fixies are the new rollerblades” thing to rest. Right?
Check out more great images from Scientific American.