Thursday, April 17, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Hall of Fame presents how the bicycle changed American women’s lives

Sue Macy

“Let me tell you what I think of bicycling. … It has done more to emancipate women than anything else in the world. I stand and rejoice every time I see a woman ride by on a wheel.”

— Susan B. Anthony, 1896

There was once a time when young, dating couples were chaperoned, otherwise they were not allowed to meet …

More than 100 years ago, women dressed in layers — which included bulky petticoats, heavy skirts, laced-up shoes and over garments that often, under just normal circumstances, made breathing difficult.

Accelerated physical activity for women was frowned upon. Athletic competition was out of the question. Both were believed to have physiological impacts that threatened health.

In the late 1800s, women couldn’t vote. Women were back-seat drivers in commerce, politics and the workplace.

However, as activists like Susan B. Anthony, Frances Willard and Elizabeth Stanton emerged to carry the torch for female suffrage and nationwide temperance, the world of women’s rights began to evolve …

And in the waning years of the 19th century, one of the single most enabling vehicles for women became the bicycle.

As part of the celebration of Women’s History Month, the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame presents “Wheels of Change,” a Tireside Chat with author Sue Macy on Sunday at 2 p.m. Macy, whose book of the same name provides a revealing look at how the bicycle was a moving force in providing women a ride into their future, is a New Jersey resident who has written a spectrum of books about ground-breaking women and interesting moments in the evolution of women in sports and society.

From books about journalist Nellie Bly (written with Linda Ellerbee) and sharp-shooting Annie Oakley to a tome about the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League and “Play Like a Girl: A Celebration of Women in Sports,” Macy’s books always unearth interesting angles, powerful correlations and how the struggle for women’s rights usually had curious bedfellows along the way.

“We’re very fortunate to have Sue Macy with us on Sunday,” says Hall of Fame trustee Brodie Hamilton. “Her being with us is perfect with March being Women’s History Month.”

Hamilton says her book — “Wheels of Change: How Women Rode the Bicycle to Freedom” — is a “compelling, interesting” read.

In her presentation Sunday, Macy will talk about how the evolution of the bicycle help put women in the workplace. For instance, women’s bikes once had one pedal and were ridden side-saddle. Once that second pedal was added and women rode astride their bikes, they could travel six, eight, 10 city blocks to a workplace.

Fashion changed as these women sought comfortable clothing, not only for their new commute, but to stay cool once in the office or factory.

Dating changed. Chaperones couldn’t keep up with their charges.

Organizations were no longer simply ladies’ clubs for the very rich with drivers. From these new middle-ground groups came plans for a better America — a country in which women wanted to be equal partners.

Macy’s book takes a close look at how the bicycle was a game-changer.

Macy still lives in her native New Jersey. She is a Princeton graduate who honed her writing skills while working for Scholastic Inc., the company famous for educational supplements.

Macy says her passion growing up was sports and that from her first book, “A Whole New Ballgame,” women’s sports have been an overriding theme.

On Sunday, the Hall of Fame at 303 Third St., in the southwest corner of Central Park, will open at 1:30 p.m. A $5 donation is requested, with Macy’s talk featuring a question-and-answer session afterward.

— Reach Bruce Gallaudet at bgallaudet@davisenterprise.net or 530-747-8047.

Bruce Gallaudet

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Davis Enterprise does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

    Benefit set for local bike legend

    By Adrian Glass-Moore | From Page: A1

     
     
    Downtown post office set to reopen

    By Thomas Oide | From Page: B3

    Run or walk to prevent child abuse in Yolo County

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3 | Gallery

     
    Nominations sought for charity paint giveaway

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3

     
    Scholar will discuss human trafficking in Friday talk

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Per Capita Davis: Now, for some good news

    By John Mott-Smith | From Page: A4

     
    Birch Lane hosts 50th anniversary party

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Hannah Stein reads poetry at gallery

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Davis Food Co-op to offer free bags on Earth Day

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Get in the picture with school board candidate

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Tickets on sale for Pence Garden Tour

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    KDVS hosts on-air fundraiser April 21-27

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Fundraiser planned for Allen’s campaign

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Food Co-op board plans open house

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Davis Downtown hosts candidate forum

    By Dave Ryan | From Page: A4

    Learn more about Google Glass at talk

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Barbecue celebrates winter shelter program

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

    Sign of things to come

    By Fred Gladdis | From Page: A8

     
    Davis Soroptimists celebrate 60 years

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

    .

    Forum

    A great community effort

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

     
    Public Health Heroes honored

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

    Tom Meyer cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A6

     
    Don’t miss a Trokanski dance

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

    Frank Bruni: The oldest hatred, forever young

    By New York Times News Service | From Page: A6

     
    Expert: Free parking is a myth

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

    Have they really learned?

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

     
    .

    Sports

    River Cats’ streak reaches six wins

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    Landry evolves into UCD women’s lacrosse leader

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Huge inning propels Pleasant Grove past DHS

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    Giants edge Dodgers

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Foster steps down as Lady Blue Devil basketball coach

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Youth roundup: Martinez, Chan come up big at gymnastics regional

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

    Kings drop season finale to Suns

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Angels get past A’s in extras

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    Wineaux: Good deals off the beaten path

    By Susan Leonardi | From Page: A7

     
    Rockabilly phenom to play at The Palms

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

    ‘One’ singular sensation to open at DMTC

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

     
    HellaCappella showcases a cappella singing

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

    25th annual state clay competition exhibit at The Artery

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

     
    .

    Business

    .

    Obituaries

    Tapan Munroe

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    .

    Comics

    Comics: Thursday, April 17, 2014

    By Creator | From Page: B6