Growing Up Harley-Davidson: Memoirs of a Motorcycle Dynasty

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9780896585690: Growing Up Harley-Davidson: Memoirs of a Motorcycle Dynasty
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Motorcycles have been a way of life for Jean Davidson. Her grandfather was Walter Davidson, one of the four founders and the first president of Harley-Davidson. Her father was company vice president Gordon Davidson. And Jean herself was a Harley-Davidson dealer, rubbing elbows with all the Harleys and Davidsons as well as the Hell's Angels and Outlaws, famous racers, and Evel Knievel. This is the history of Harley-Davidson motorcycles no one else knew-until now! Here is the fairy-tale story of how four boys built their first motorcycle in a shed; how a slippery-handed maid stole all the company's earnings from the coffee can that served as their "bank"; and how a hermit uncle donated his life's savings to resurrect the company and set it on the path to becoming the world's most famous motorcycle maker. Here is the inside scoop on behind-the-boardroom-door politics and corporate battles, the unknown history of the first Knucklehead and Sportster, the secret friendship with arch-rival Indian motorcycles, and more. Here are family stories and rare photos from the family album that no one else has seen before.

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About the Author:

Jean Davidson is the granddaughter of Walter Davidson, one of the founders of Harley-Davidson, Inc., and the firm's first president. Jean began riding a Harley at age 12, and was a Harley dealer for many years. She has rubbed shoulders with all the Harleys and Davidsons, famous racers, Hell's Angels, and Evel Knievel.

From Library Journal:

Partly a personal memoir but primarily a history of the Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Company, this is a pleasant departure from the many other company histories. Written by a granddaughter of one of the company's founders, it focuses mainly on the company's formation and growth during the early to mid-1900s and has the added perspective of details and commentary on the personal, social, and working lives of Harley's founding families. Much of this is anecdotal, derived from memories, family stories, and diaries, and will surely contribute to the lore that surrounds the Harley-Davidson motorcycle for example, that it was developed as a quicker, more fun way to get to the fishing hole than by bicycle. The observations, perspectives, and style of the book make it interesting and useful, although some of the material is sketchy or doesn't tie in well. Vintage photographs add interest but often have little link with adjoining text. A good addition for public library motorcycling collections and perhaps for academic libraries seeking historical material on Harley-Davidson. David Van de Streek, Pennsylvania State Univ. Libs., York
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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