Presentation Whistle - Orient Cycle Club - August 22, 1896

We often think of them as children's toys, but noise makers, bells, whistles, etc. were necessities for any cyclist pedaling the roads during the 1870's - 1890's. Pictured here is a fine sterling silver cyclist's whistle. This whistle was awarded to some lucky rider by the Orient Cycle Club on August 22, 1896. The Orient Cycle Club were based in Boston Massachusetts. The earliest reference I have found for the club is the year 1894. Below is a reference to a ten mile road race held in Boston in 1895 by the Orient Cycle Club. This reference is from The Referee, a cycling magazine of the era.

Interestingly the Waltham Manufacturing Company, of Waltham Massachusetts, began to manufacture the Orient bicycle in 1894. I suspect a connection between the Waltham Mfg. Co., makers of the Orient bicycle, and the Orient Cycle Club.

Boston Has a Race with 109 Starters. Boston, June 23 1895.

 — East Boston witnessed its greatest road race yesterday, when 109 out of* 112 entrants faced the starter in the annual ten-mile event of the Orient Cycle Club. Baker from the 1:15 mark rode well, and just as they got on the bridge near home he and Kent were riding abreast. A long, thin lane stared them in the face and the first man to enter it had the better opportunity of winning, as there was no room for another to pass in a sprint. Kent, realizing this entered the lane in the lead and with a host of riders behind came across the tape a winner. For over two minutes the riders piled home on top of each other, giving the officials all they wanted to do to keep track of them. Billy French from scratch was the winner of the first time, while Peabody and Baker were tied for second time.