Henry also rode in a child seat


That’s me in New York in 1967. It looks like I’m about a year old here. I’m certainly not much older since I’m not wearing shoes, thus not walking yet.

My earliest memories are actually of riding around behind mom like this, pulling her underwear up, pointing things out and I assume babbling unintelligible things about them. Millions of these Raleigh Sports three-speed bikes were sold there in this period but few actually got ridden much. My mom was an exception; this bike got ridden quite a bit.

In high school my friend Tom and I used to collect these old English bikes. Every garage seemed to have a matching his and hers set collecting dust and we found more at church rummage sales, temple bazaars, police auctions etc etc. We had dozens of them in various states of completion. We did restorations and repairs for others, but also built some great hot-rods from these bikes: stripped of accessories with handlebars upside down we spent countless days violently racing through parks, woods and around golf courses in what we called “death rides”… We weren’t done until either one of the bikes couldn’t be bent back into rideable shape or somebody was in too much pain to continue. This sometimes resulted in 6 hour marathons but also a couple times in 5 minute sprints.

Check out the child seat on my mom’s Raleigh: It’s just bent steel with flat pads and no harness, head or foot protection whatsoever. I recall from much later that it folded up. What innocent times eh?

4 Responses to “Henry also rode in a child seat”

  1. seb Says:

    Hey that’s a nice pic. Like Obelix (a famous french cartoon character in France) it seems you fell into the cauldron of the potion as a baby!

  2. Lynn Says:

    My parents had seats like that on their matching Dunelt bikes. Dad’s bike was red with a red tartan folding child seat, and Mom’s bike was blue with a blue tartan seat. I remember smiling to my older sister over on Dad’s bike as we enjoyed our rides, then later feeling lucky that I was still small enough for a ride when my sister wasn’t anymore, and I distinctly remember being very upset when Dad told me I was just too big to fit but my little sister could still go. He eventually turned them into chairs for our baby dolls. I love your photo! I’ll have to dig through our family archives to see if we have any.

  3. henry Says:

    Great story, thanks! Please send photos if yo can find them. It’d be fun to post pics and stories of people’s early cycling experiences.

    Dunelts were also made by Raleigh in Nottingham who sold nearly the same bikes under at least half a dozen names: Raleigh, Robin Hood, Rudge and Dunelt are the examples that come to mind. These were (and still are) excellent quality bikes, though definitely with some notable limitations: for example terrible sidepull brakes on steel rims that are almost useless in wet weather.

    Enormous numbers of these bikes must have been sold in in some regions, particularly the US Northeast. Tom and I found 10-25 year old examples (in the early 80’s) every corner we turned. Of course that also says a lot about their simplicity and build quality.

  4. israel Says:

    hey i was just wondering if that seat is worth any money knowing the fact it is a antique if you can let me know thanks once again

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