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Wednesday, March 5, 2008 Old Motorcycles

In an alley off Melrose, the shop that specializes is old motorcycles

In an alley off Melrose, the shop that specializes is old motorcycles

The Indian Motocycle Manufacturing Company yes, spelled that way of Springfield, Massachusetts, was America's oldest motorcycle brand and once the largest manufacturer of motorcycles in the world. There was the Scout, made prior to WWII, and the Chief, in production from 1922 to 1953. In 1914, Erwin "Cannonball" Baker rode an Indian across America, from San Diego to New York, in a record eleven days, twelve hours and ten minutes. Two years later he was riding the Powerplus, a side-valve V-Twin, and that was in production until 1924.  This looks like one of those.

In 1945, a group headed by Ralph B. Rogers purchased controlling interest in the Indian company and things went downhill Indian discontinued the Scout and began to manufacture lightweight motorcycles.  Poor quality and a lack of development petty much ended things. Manufacture of all products was halted in 1953 Brockhouse Engineering and Royal Enfield bikes were imported from England and sold as Indians through the rest of the fifties. The Indian name then passed to the company that imported Matchless motorcycles into the United States, but they didn't use the name, and they went into liquidation in 1962. No more Indians.

So it goes.

Indian Powerplus, a side-valve V-Twin, in production until 1924
n an alley off Melrose, the shop that specializes is old motorcycles

If you wish to use any of these photos for commercial purposes I assume you'll discuss that with me. And should you choose to download any of these images and use them invoking the "fair use" provisions of the Copyright Act of 1976, please provide credit, and, on the web, a link back this site.

Technical Note:

Photographs after March 3, 2008, were taken with a Nikon D200 or a Nikon D70 when noted. All previous photographs were taken with the D70.  The lenses used are (1) AF-S Nikkor 18-70 mm 1:35-4.5G ED, or (2) AF Nikkor 70-300 mm telephoto, or (3) AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 55-200 mm f/4-5.6G ED.  Photography here is modified for web posting using Adobe Photoshop 7.0.  The earliest photography in the archives was done with a Sony Mavica digital still camera (MVC-FD-88) with built-in digital zoom.

[Old Motorcycles]

All text and photos, unless otherwise noted, Copyright © 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 - Alan M. Pavlik