Harley-Davidson history is long and proud and commenced at the start of the twentieth century. The beginnings of the American icon were very humble. In 1903, Davidson brothers Arthur and Walter as well as William S. Harley built one particular cylinder motorcycle in the wooden shed built by cabinet making William C. Davidson. The Davidson brother's aunt Janet painted the pin-stripes around the first couple of Harleys.
In 1905 the very first Harley to become manufactured in significant numbers was the Silent Gray Fellow named because of its quite operation and grey color. These folks were 450cc single cylinder bikes utilizing a bicycle-style frame.To decrease and stop the rider had to peddle backwards.
Pursuing the official formation in the company in 1907, Arthur joined over 800 dealers in decade. These dealers were throughout America's then 48 states. Just five years following your first Harleys were made and sold the Detroit Police purchased a quantity of motorcycles. By 1925, over 2,500 police units in the usa were riding Harley-Davidsons.
The 1st V-Twin Harley was manufactured in 1909. It had been an inlet-over-exhaust belt-driven engine. This first V-Twin was the Model 5-D. It was the engine that would will continue to make Harley famous.
A big part of Harley-Davidson history is Harleys contribution to U.S. Military efforts. In 1918 Harley supplied thousands of motorcycles towards the military to be used in The first world war. Almost half of all Harley-Davidsons produced that year were sold towards the military. The first American GI to go in Germany was Roy Holtz, riding a Harley-Davidson.
Harley became involved in racing to demonstrate the dependability of the bikes. Harley's first and notable success what food was in 1908. Walter Davidson won the Jack Pine Endurance run. Not only did the bike prove its dependability, the bike won the economy contest with 188 mpg. In 1921 Harley becomes the very first motorcycle to win a race with the average speed of 100PMH on a board track in Fresno, CA. Another early success story was the record of Joe Petrali, who set an eye on 136.183MPH at Daytona Beach in 1937. Early Harley racing teams adopted a pig for their mascot and carried it on victory laps. This might have been the start the word HOG. Racing had not been always a high priority for Harley however riders also have great success over the years.
In 1941 America joins Wwii. Harley creates the Model WLA showcasing blackout lights, high clearence fenders and metal leg shields. The vast majority of Harley-Davidsons output was specialized in the military from 1941 to 1945. After world war 2, Harley produced 88,000 WLA models for your U.S. Military and around 20,000 to the Canadians.
When thinking about Harley-Davidson history, we can't forget the many The second world war ex-servicemen who came back to small town America. While Harley-Davidson's civilian production had basically ceased in the war, there was a lot of army surplus motorcycles to get bought. A number of these ex-servicemen started a trend by purchasing and customizing these bikes. They removed or shortened the fenders to cut back weight. These bikes became called Bobbers. These changes ultimately lead to the evolution of the Chopper.
After having a post-war boom, their sales were damaged from the influx of cheaper Japanese and British imports. This competition ironically caused an upsurge of curiosity in motorcycles, that your company profited from. Harley was bought by American Machine and Foundry (AMF) in 1969. Harley-Davidson history is loaded with ups and downs. Many of us are who are old enough to understand that Harley experienced some hard times throughout the AMF years. Three decades ago senior management bought the company back from AMF.
Harley slowly went back inside the 80s and after this Harley-Davidson is amongst the best names in the world. In 1983 Harley Owners Group (HOG) was formed with 30,000 members in the fresh. Finally, there are about millions of HOG members around the world. After 105 years, Harley-Davidson Motorcycles are more popular than ever.