At age 20, Effie Hotchkiss dreamed of seeing California. Her brother had taught her to ride and repair a motorcycle at age 16, and she aspired to convince other young ladies that motorcycling was a healthy sport for women. To achieve her goal, Effie set out to accomplish something no other female had before: a cross-country motorcycle trip. Effie’s mother, Avis, had been a frequent passenger in the sidecar of Effie’s three-speed Harley-Davidson, and she decided to accompany her daughter on the trip.
The two women left Brooklyn on May 2, 1915 and traveled through bad roads, bitter cold, extreme heat, torrential rains and just about anything else Mother Nature could throw in their way. Effie spent time on their trip making repairs—once even using a piece of her rubber poncho to patch a tire. After two months and over 9,000 miles, Effie and Avis made history when they arrived at the World’s Fair in San Francisco.
How many of you riders were taught valuable lessons from a brother, friend or relative? For most the passion seems to start this way.