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Milwaukee Wheelmen/Badger Wheelmen Historical Info?

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Milwaukee Wheelmen/Badger Wheelmen Historical Info?

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Old 08-13-18, 12:21 PM
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nbhphoto
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Milwaukee Wheelmen/Badger Wheelmen Historical Info?

Hello!
I am living in Michigan but I grew up in Milwaukee, WI with memories of Wares Cycles on 76th and Center and stories of the Brown Deer Park Track and the Kenosha/Washington Park Velodrome. My Grandpa would always point out Don Wares, and also his own image, on the trophy/picture wall there. He was partial to Cinelli's and I can recall at least three different models hanging in his garage.

My Grandfather, Art Harrmann, passed away about three years ago and had long ago passed on his passion for bicycles, and bicycle racing, to me. I now have in my possession clippings, trophies, shoes (late 60's?) memorabilia from the 40's and 50's, and a Cinelli Mod B with Altenbürger derailleur. (1960's?) A lot of it deals with the Milwaukee Wheelmen (patches, newspaper clippings, etc). One trophy is from the Elgin to Chicago Road Race, where he placed First in the 5 minute handicap start and Seventh overall (I think mid to late 1940's - when I confirm the year I will post an update here).

Is there anyone who can provide me with, or put me in touch with someone who has, access to any historical background or archives about this Club? My research so far has been with the Milwaukee Historical Society, Milwaukee Public Libraries, etc, and I decided it was time to reach out here on this forum. Any and all leads and memories are appreciated!

Thanks in advance!
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Old 08-13-18, 03:52 PM
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Maybe this is new information. A friend lent me a book Wheel Fever written by Jesse Gant and Nicolas Hoffman. It has a forward by David Herlihy. I believe he received the book at a convention for museum leaders. It was published by the Wisconsin Historical Society. I am about a 1/3 of the way through and am still in the late 1800s. I have seen the pics that show the Santa Rampage so I know it discusses recent events. Good luck if this helps.
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Old 08-14-18, 07:17 AM
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Originally Posted by debade View Post
Maybe this is new information. A friend lent me a book Wheel Fever written by Jesse Gant and Nicolas Hoffman. It has a forward by David Herlihy. I believe he received the book at a convention for museum leaders. It was published by the Wisconsin Historical Society. I am about a 1/3 of the way through and am still in the late 1800s. I have seen the pics that show the Santa Rampage so I know it discusses recent events. Good luck if this helps.
Purchased! Thank you. Looks like I might widen my search to the Wisconsin Historical Society based on the bibliography from this book.
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Old 08-14-18, 02:01 PM
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You might contact Vince at Ben's Cyclery. Ben's is a long term, several generations I think, Milw Bike shop. As such, I'd guess he may have some info or, more likely, access to someone with more info.

I bought a bike from Wares on 76th and Center and rode the Brown Deer velodrome often in the late 70's. It wasn't used anymore for racing, but it was fun to ride.
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Old 08-15-18, 11:22 AM
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Thanks for the lead!
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Old 08-17-18, 10:38 PM
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The proprietor of Patio Bike in Hales Corners, a Milwaukee suburb, is an old timer and may have something. The Kegel family who own's the Wheel & Sprocket empire may have archives. The founder, Chris, passed a little while ago though. The aforementioned Ben's on Milwaukee's south side is my personal LBS and is never short on knowledge. Yellow Jersey in Madison always had a ton of vintage stuff when they were near the capitol, maybe they know a little about vintage cycling in SE WI.

Other places that have been around a while: Allis Bike, South Shore Cylcery, The Bikesmiths. I don't know these places well but they've stood the test of time in MKE.

Reaching out to some of the SE Wisconsin cycle clubs or WI ride organizers (Bike Wisconsin comes to mind) may at least yield some leads.
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Old 08-21-18, 06:31 AM
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Originally Posted by powermatt99 View Post
The proprietor of Patio Bike in Hales Corners, a Milwaukee suburb, is an old timer and may have something. The Kegel family who own's the Wheel & Sprocket empire may have archives. The founder, Chris, passed a little while ago though. The aforementioned Ben's on Milwaukee's south side is my personal LBS and is never short on knowledge. Yellow Jersey in Madison always had a ton of vintage stuff when they were near the capitol, maybe they know a little about vintage cycling in SE WI.

Other places that have been around a while: Allis Bike, South Shore Cylcery, The Bikesmiths. I don't know these places well but they've stood the test of time in MKE.

Reaching out to some of the SE Wisconsin cycle clubs or WI ride organizers (Bike Wisconsin comes to mind) may at least yield some leads.
I think I bought my first Bianchi from the Patio Bike shop! I didn't think they were still around. Thanks for the leads!
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Old 08-21-18, 05:03 PM
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Originally Posted by powermatt99 View Post
The proprietor of Patio Bike in Hales Corners, a Milwaukee suburb, is an old timer and may have something. The Kegel family who own's the Wheel & Sprocket empire may have archives. The founder, Chris, passed a little while ago though. The aforementioned Ben's on Milwaukee's south side is my personal LBS and is never short on knowledge. Yellow Jersey in Madison always had a ton of vintage stuff when they were near the capitol, maybe they know a little about vintage cycling in SE WI.

Other places that have been around a while: Allis Bike, South Shore Cylcery, The Bikesmiths. I don't know these places well but they've stood the test of time in MKE.

Reaching out to some of the SE Wisconsin cycle clubs or WI ride organizers (Bike Wisconsin comes to mind) may at least yield some leads.
Emery Cycles is another long-term ('63) family-owned shop.

https://www.emerys.com/

+1 on South Shore Cyclery and Bikesmiths...both good shops I frequent. South Shore has a portion of their store set up as a museum of sorts with some very old bikes.

Cream City Cycle Club has been around for many years.
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Old 08-24-18, 08:04 AM
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Well I'm headed to Wisconsin to continue my research. Thanks for the assistance everyone!
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Old 08-27-18, 06:55 AM
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If you need any good routes to bike while you're here..send me a pm. I know..most of them in the area.
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