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Pedaling Through History

At a very nice 4th of July BBQ I happened to be asked if I knew about creating historic bike tours. No, not tours on historic bikes (not sure that penny-farthing would be suitable for riding long distances…) but a tour around local history done on bike. And I had no idea. I had been on historic bike tours as part of National Trust conferences but did not know of any local examples right off the top of my head.

So, in true preservation partner fashion, I asked. Posting to the Massachusetts Historic Preservation List Serve and the Massachusetts History Alliance List Serve, I asked for any information on how to put together an historic bike tour and examples of people who have done it. Why reinvent the wheel? (pun intended).

The response was truly remarkable. Several communities have created bike tours that highlight local history, some are put on by historic societies, land trusts or other organizations. Some are stand alone tours while others are part of larger events like conferences. The theme can vary, depending on where the bike route goes and what stories will be pointed out along the way. Tours can take advantage of existing rail-trails and other bike routes in the area.

They do also require a lot of plannin