The arrival of the bicycle in the later part of the 19th century inspired many cyclists to travel . Long distances could be covered and with it the need for lodging.
The League of American Wheelemen was a national organization based in the United States whose mission was to promote cycling and the rights of cyclists. The L.A.W. was founded in 1880. Their initial aim was to gain access to the use of the roads and highways by cyclists. In many cities and municipalities local cycling clubs were formed. Many of these members would then join the ranks of their State Division of the L.A.W. Membership in the League offered many benefits including legal representation, travel information, discounts, locations of repair facilities, etc. The L.A.W. might be compared to the 20th century equivalent in motoring for example, the American Automobile Association or Triple "A".
The League of American Wheelmen supported a series of L.A.W. approved hotels in each state. On each hotel was attached an enamel sign to alert traveling Wheelmen that here was an L.A.W. approved hotel. This sign was once attached to a Hotel in the state of Pennsylvania. It was placed there by the Pennsylvania Division of the L.A.W. and dates to the late 19th century.