Special Guests: Brian Keating, Gary Keating, and Robert Keating
When looking at the market for pre-war motorcycles, it may seem that field was dominated by just a handful of manufacturers; Harley Davidson, Indian, Excelsior, Henderson. But, did you know that in these very early days of motorcycling, hundreds of motorcycle companies were in existence across the globe? Many of these manufacturers actually date back even earlier than American legends Harley Davidson and Indian! Dozens of these smaller companies were in existence here in the United States, with many of them located in the Northeast. While some of these companies were later purchased by the industry leaders, most of these early builders wound up closing their doors. The design elements of several of these defunct manufacturers still wound their way into the machines produced by the larger companies. Today, machines such as the Flying Merkel, Reading Standard, Minneapolis, Cyclone and several others are invaluable to cataloging the history of the sport and are usually only seen from behind plate glass in a museum. On September 23rd, we are joined by three very special guests. Signing on for the cast on the first episode on our new network, we are honored to welcome the Keating Brothers: Brian, Gary, and Robert. The Keating brothers have an interesting link to the pioneering days of motorcycle development: enter the Keating Wheel Company. Amongst a long and incredible list of milestones, the Keating Wheel Company was the very first manufacturer in the United States to build a complete and running motorcycle (also called a motor bicycle)—MONTHS before Oscar Hedstrom and the Indian Motorcycle Company offered their first machine. Adding to the incredible history of the company, the Keating Wheel Company sued both Indian Motorcycle and Harley Davidson for patent infringement and design, and WON both cases.