No Hands: The Rise and Fall of the Schwinn Bicycle Company
This book was published in 1996, although I just recently became aware of it and managed to get a copy due to Michigan's excellent statewide library catalog and borrowing program. Although it was written by a couple of Chicago-area business writers and sometimes gets bogged down in business and backruptcy-related minutiae, I found it to be a really interesting read for its history of not only Schwinn, but essentially of bicycling in the U.S. Schwinn started during the original "bicycle boom" of the 1890s and made it just about 100 years under its original family ownership before going bankrupt in the early 1990s.
In addition to the Schwinn story, it also had some interesting history and anecdotes of the rise of various other players in the industry such as Giant, Specialized, Trek, and Shimano, plus other small brands such as Kestrel, along with the personalities who established them. For example, Schwinn was essentially responsible for the rise of Giant in this country and ended up being undersold when Giant took to marketing bikes to dealers under their own name instead of just building them for Schwinn.
Being from Detroit, I was also intrigued that Schwinn's old-school management made a lot of the same mistakes made by the U.S. automakers in the same time frame, such as failure to modernize production facilities, not recognizing emerging markets and trends (BMX, adult biking, lightweight road bikes, MTB, etc.), and not taking the Asian manufacturers seriously enough as competition.
I have only owned one Schwinn, which was a mid-70s LeTour 10-speed, and was surprised to find that my bike was actually imported from Japan simply because Schwinn's factory was unable to manufacture bikes with the "newfangled" lugged frame technology. It was the beginning of the end for them.
Also brought out was how difficult it is for a 100% family-owned business to succeed for many generations in a row with family members at the helm. Sooner or later you're going to get someone who gets the top position by entitlement over talent and wrecks it all. Again, I was reminded of how Bill Ford turned over the top spot of Ford to an "outsider" (Alan Mulally) and thereby saved his family's company from the fates that GM and Chrysler fell into.
Anyway, highly recommended for bicycling enthusiasts!