The Wisconsin Historical Society Press book, Wheel Fever: How Wisconsin Became a Great Bicycling State by Jesse J. Gant and Nicholas J. Hoffman, was recently awarded the 2014 American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) Award of Merit.
The AASLH has awarded the Leadership in History Awards for the past 69 years and is one of the highest achievements in the preservation and interpretation of state and local history. AASLH awards will be presented at a special banquet during the 2014 AASLH Annual Meeting in St. Paul, Minnesota, on Friday, September 19, 2014.
This award-winning book explores the origins of bicycling and why those origins still matter, but it is also about Wisconsin’s continuing fascination with all things bicycle. The authors weave their way through bicycling history beginning with the velocipede craze of 1869 and pedaling through the “wheel fever” of the 1890s. This lushly illustrated book features never-before-seen images of early bicycles and the people who rode them: bloomer girls, bicycle jockeys, young urbanites and unionized workers. “Wheel Fever” also details the often-impassioned debates over who should be allowed to ride, where they could ride, and even what they should wear.