An Interview With David Herlihy, Author of “Bicycle – The History”

David Herlihy’s book, Bicycle: A history, was the first and only book on cycles which achieved it to the most prominent display stand at my local Bn. Published in 2004, it is often a stunning success, getting the good bicycles to tens of thousands of folks in several different different languages. The book is abundant and colorful, both in its photographs and the words. internetowy sklep rowerowy

I met David while I was in college or university in the nineteen eighties. Having been making somewhat of extra cash by buying beautiful, slightly used road bikes in France (DeRosas, Cinellis, Tommasinis and the like) and then selling them at extremely affordable prices to bicyclists in america. This allowed him to indulge his love of travel, play with wonderful bicycles, and bring joy to the people on both sides of the Ocean. Come to think of it, his books on cycling do pretty much the same things…

Queen: Bicycle: A brief history was a huge success. How has this success changed your life?

A: Thanks, Forbes. “Huge” is a relative (and very flattering) term. When I may brag a bit, since it arrived out in fall 2005, Bicycle has sold over 20, 000 copies, generally hard covers. That’s a pretty giddy figure for an e book of this nature, published by an academic press. I’m certain it’s far more than even Yale had anticipated. Coming from what I hear, it can now one of their all-time bestsellers (there are even editions in Russian and Korean).

All of this is highly gratifying, as was all the attention it received in the press, including reviews in prestigious magazines like The Economist and The Ny Times Assessment of Books (I have to credit my outstanding publicist, Brenda King, for engineering much of that). Most were quite advantageous and easy to break down (a few were less satisfying, but I been able to get over them pretty quickly).

And, certainly, I relished my quarter-hour of fame. It was thrilling touring and promoting my book, even if I was required to cover my own expenses typically. We enjoyed giving slide classes and signing books, and meeting cycling enthusiasts of all sorts. One of my most memorable occasions was at a bike show in Edison, New Shirt, where I had a table. After one dude confirmed that I was in fact the publisher, he kind of lost it. He had his picture taken with me personally using his cell cellphone. I seemed a mountain star.

Returning to fact a bit, I won’t be able to say that the reserve has radically changed my entire life or lifestyle, at least not yet. But it has been a very positive experience and I actually think they have opened up new artistic possibilities.

To get starters, it was a great relief and satisfaction to finally turn a decade plus of research into something concrete that could give me some recognition and actually create slightly earnings to keep body and soul along (not to mention assisting to pay for all of that research, which included multiple trips to Europe. Not really that I’m asking for sympathy, actually! ) And I must say, in my defense, that much of my favorite materials surfaced toward the finish of my inquiry. Had We published the book even a few years previously, just would not have been as colorful or as rich.

Not only was I capable of talk about many interesting discoveries, My spouse and i also got to air some deeply held vérité. I think there are a lot of beliefs out there about bike history, especially with consideration to introduced and early on development. The kick-propelled Draisine of 1817, in particular, was not a bike per se and, as it had been, it did not lead right to the original bicycles of the 1860s (though it was arguably the principal inspiration). I’ve also determined that the Scottish concern claims arising through the rate of growth of the late nineteenth century are dubious at best. And of course the great contribution of Pierre Lallement, the first bike patentee, has long recently been overshadowed by the Michaux name, which likewise engulfed the role of the Oliviers, the true professional pioneers.

In certain sense it can be a losing battle to insist on each one of these points-myths are stubborn things. Yet at least now We’ve spoken my peace and I can move on to other exciting jobs with a little more financial stability and a tad bit more credibility and clout.

Queen: What are some other projects you are working on?

A: In the last few years, I’ve continued to offer lectures here and there for various cycling teams and educational programs. Subsequent month, for example, Items engage in a panel conversation at the unveiling of difficulties Taylor memorial in Worcester. And on Might 24 I’ll give a talk at the Memorial of the City of recent York. We’re starting to speak about putting along an exhibition on the history of cycling in New York, in association with-appropriately enough-Bike New You are able to, (sponsors of the twelve-monthly 5 boro ride that draws 30, 000 cyclists).