Herbert H. Dow Membership Card to the League of American Wheelmen, 1896

Nineteenth-century bicyclists, referred to as “wheelmen,” faced unending challenges from rutted roads of gravel and dirt, as well as antagonistic horsemen and pedestrians. In an effort to improve riding conditions, thousands of cyclists from across the United States joined the League of American Wheelmen to advocate for paved roads. By 1898 the League had more than 102,000 members, including the Wright Brothers and John D. Rockefeller. Dow himself was an avid wheelman and league member. One of his earliest side ventures was the Midland Anti-Leak Company that produced a puncture-sealing compound for bicycle tires

Dow Historical Collection