Facts and Trivia Nov 2016

A TIMELINE OF LESSER KNOWN HARLEY-DAVIDSON HISTORY

“PART 1 of 3”

Most of you are familiar with the Harley-Davidson story, a timeline that dates back over 113 years.

This is a compilation of some interesting lesser known facts that were pivotal to the Harley-Davidson story.

April 3rd 1903, Walter Davidson who was living in Kansas at the time, traveled to Milwaukee Wisconsin to attend his brother Williams wedding. During his visit he had the opportunity to see for the first time the motorbike his brothers and friend Bill Harley have been working on. Soon after that Walter returned to his job in Kansas, but Walter was so consumed with what he saw in Milwaukee that he moved back to join his brothers and Bill Harley, this started a relationship between the four partners that lasted throughout their lives.

July 18th 1918, The Motor Company is awarded a contract from the war department to manufacture motorcycles for the military, Arthur Davidson has an idea to open a school to teach the Army how Harleys are built and how to maintain them. This idea has to be one of the most ingenious ideas ever conceived in business because as soon as the war ends there will be thousands of young men coming back to America all knowing how to ride and maintain a Harley-Davidson, so what motorcycle do you think they’re going to buy. In fact the first American to enter Germany at the end of the war did it on a Harley.

October 1st 1934, the Knucklehead almost wasn’t. Proposed production of the 61ci OHV Knucklehead for 1935 is canceled due to development costs during the depression and because the company’s sales are down. However, in January reports start coming in that the new 45ci and 74ci side valve motors have been locking up, as a result in June 1935 the OK is given to go ahead with the new Knucklehead, by January 27th 1936 the demonstration models are completed and ready to ship to dealers. In September of 1937 Arthur Davidson suggests the company focus on the Knucklehead and reduce production of all other models. The rest is history and the Knucklehead runs from 1936 through 1947 making it what has come to be known as the first modern motorcycle.

Look for the next issue of Full Throttle Magazine for Part 2, covering 1937 through 2017.

Trivia Question of the Month:

Question:  What year did Harley-Davidson first use a belt for final drive?

Answer to last month’s trivia question:

Question: What year did “New York State” start issuing Motorcycle License’s? Was it:

1903, 1918, 1938 or 1946

Answer: the year was 1918 and the license was issued at a cost of $2.50

Bo’s Monthly Words of Wisdom:

Always remember, when a woman says “WHAT” it’s not because she didn’t hear you, she’s giving you a chance to change your story!

UNTIL NEXT MONTH
“Live to Ride or Step Aside”

Written by Bo
“The Hog Shoppe”