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Amazon Best Books of the Month, June 2010: Frank Lenz was a man driven by his passions. As an accomplished "wheelman" during the late 19th century, Lenz’s dreams were dominated by the emerging sport of cycling and an intense desire to make a name for himself. In May of 1892, he attempted to fuse both by embarking on a quest to circumscribe the globe by bicycle. The journey had already been accomplished in tandem, but Lenz upped the ante--and raised eyebrows--by announcing he would ride his dangerous route alone. The Lost Cyclist is a riveting tale of tragedy, pride, and naivete that is both brilliantly told and meticulously researched. Opinions may differ as to whether Lenz was unaware or unconcerned by the inherent dangers he faced, but the story of his fateful journey belongs on the varied shelves of cycling enthusiasts, mystery fans, and nonfiction devotees alike. --Dave CallananProduct Description
A Look Inside The Lost Cyclist
(Click on Images to Enlarge)
|Lenz (far right) in Glenshaw, with W. T. McClarren and Charles Petticord||Lenz (far left) and Petticord (center) on Smithfield bridge, leaving for New Orleans. August 1891||From left to right: Petticord, McClarren, Lenz, and identified friend near Natrona. Note Lenz's homemade umbrella.||Lenz in Washington, PA|
|Lenz and Petticord meet two "safety" riders on the National Road in Lewisville, IN, August 1890||Lenz tips his cap in Greenfield, IN. August 1890||Lenz and Petticord in Effingham, IL, on their way to St. Louis, August 1890 along the National Road||Petticord and Lenz in Collinsville, IL, August 1890.|
Starred Review. When the bicycle first gained popularity in the 1880s, intrepid daredevils were quick to seize upon it as a tool of exploration and an indicator of resourcefulness. Frank Lenz and William Sachtleben were two such enthusiasts. Sachtleben and a partner had gained notoriety for cycling almost across the globe, including through China, a region that was alien to Westerners at the time (they traversed particularly difficult sections by train). But Lenz proposes something truly dangerous: he will cycle the entire world alone, and he won't shy away from the hard parts. Lenz's exploits become the talk of the cycling world, but don't reach prominence in America until he disappears in eastern Turkey, a hairsbreadth from reaching his goal. Sachtleben is sent to Turkey to investigate and ends up wading through government corruption, tribal alliances, and a region in the throes of revolution. This meticulously-researched account exposes readers to an unfamiliar world. Readers with a love of cycling or curiosity about this moment in history will appreciate Herlihy's knowledge and passion, but the simply curious may feel at times like they're pedaling uphill. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Editorial Reviews
if you love history, mystery and adventure (and cycling, of course) this is the book. It is a great gift, too!Published 16 months ago by Barbara
Fascinating story about early cycling. Wish there were more photos, but the ones presented were well done. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Michael Reeber
Really great historical information and two fascinating stories that end up intertwined ... but I feel like the book could have had a third trimmed out of it and it would have been... Read morePublished 21 months ago by David McCreath
This is an interesting story that will appeal to bike riders, travelers, true mystery fans and history buffs as well. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Amazon Customer
A good read on the earliest days of cycling, and the evolution of the earliest bikes, plus the author uses the story of then attempts by individual, or pairs of, bikers that... Read morePublished 22 months ago by clyde a cody
The re-discovery of a spelling binding tale. Opens a small window into the brave new world of cycling in the 1880's-1890's.Published 22 months ago by SRJ