1896 Cycler’s Guide and Road Book of California. It has great advertisements, and I can only imagine what the roads labelled ‘poor’ condition were like, as even the best roads at that time were not paved. The roads of the late 19th Century were gravel or dirt roads.

“I often hear now-a-days, the automobile instigated good roads; that the automobile is the parent of good roads. Well, the truth is, the bicycle is the father of the good roads movement in this country.” -Horatio Earle, founder of American Road and Transportation Builders Association and  a former chief consul of the League of American Wheelmen. Earle became known as “the father of good roads” for his work on America’s highways, work he started when he was a cyclist.

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