The Fastest Bicycle Rider In the World: The Story of a Colored Boy's Indomitable Courage and Success Against Great Odds - Marshall W. “Major” Taylor 1928 - Wormley Publishing Company, Worcester - First Edition World champion at 19... One of the first black athletes to become world champion in any sport, before Jackie Robinson, Jack Johnson or Jesse Owens... 1-mile record holder... American sprint champion in 1898, 1899, 1900... triumphant tours of Europe and Australia... Victories against all European champions...

For more than 16 years Taylor bicycled to glory on three continents. His name on the marquee meant added revenue and attendance. In Europe, he was a superstar, and treated like one. Yet he was mocked by fellow riders in America, shunned by his sport's establishment, and died forgotten and penniless in Chicago in 1932. Part of why Taylor should be remembered is the way he reacted to the hatred he had to ride against: ‘
I always played the game fairly and tried my hardest, although I was not always given a square deal or anything like it ... I only ask from them the same kind of treatment which I give and am willing to continue to give’.

A near fine copy of this important autobiography in the rare dust jacket. With photographic plates.
  Marshall Walter "Major" Taylor [1878-1932] is one of the early sports world's most stylish, entertaining, and gentlemanly personalities. Born in 1878 in Indianapolis, the son of poor rural parents, Taylor worked in a bike shop until prominent bicycle racer "Birdie" Munger coached him for his first professional racing successes in 1896. Despite continuous bureaucratic and, at times, physical opposition, he won his first national championship two years later and became world champion in 1899 in Montreal.

On the jacket and front free endpaper is the stamp of Hans Ohrt Lightweight Bicycles of Beverly Hills, CA. Hans Ohrt, born in the late 1800’s when Major Taylor was shattering records, won the US national and world’s amateur titles in 1915, coming first in the half mile, one two and three mile races. In the 1930’s Ohrt opened his retail bicycle shop ’Hans Ohrt Lightweight Bicycles’, counting among his customers Clark Gable, Bing Crosby and Marilyn Monroe.

Provenance: From the Estate of Daniel R. Davis of Seattle, Washington.
References: Howie Cohen’s Everything Bicycles. Andrew Ritchie -
Major Taylor: The Extraordinary Career of a Champion Bicycle Racer. Marlene Targ Brill - Marshall "Major" Taylor: World Champion Bicyclist, 1899-1901.
8vo. pp. [14] 431 [1]. Publisher’s blue cloth, lettered in gilt.
  Condition: Near fine, in very good jacket with closed tears, 3cm chip to head of spine, tape repair to verso.   Ref: 105205   Price: HK$ 12,000