Vintage Photographs of Bicycles from Around Alberta

If you’re anything like me, once the winter snow melts, you’re just itching to wheel the bicycle out of the garage and go for a ride. The sense of freedom that simply pedalling can provide is difficult to explain, but I do know that I am always just one bike ride away from a good mood. During the past fourteen-plus months of health protocols and uncertainty, the bicycle has found a renewed place in the lives of many. So before you jump on your bike to enjoy your next ride, why not scroll these historical photos of bicycles from all across Alberta? You’ll notice that the technology has come a long way since these early models, but the concept remains ever the same. There are plenty of smiling faces to be found in the following photographs, so remember this; you cannot buy happiness, but you can buy a bicycle and that’s pretty close!

Ireland home, Medicine Hat, Alberta, 1896-1899
Woman on bicycle, Calgary, Alberta, 1913-1919
Canon Harry Gibbon Stocken on bicycle, Blackfoot (Siksika) reserve, Alberta, 1900-1910
Leo Lewis and Alex Spivak with bicycle, Medicine Hat, Alberta, 1910s
James Ivan Linton with bicycle beside Linton home, Calgary, Alberta, 1914
James Ivan Linton and his bicycle in yard at Linton family home, Calgary, Alberta, 1913
Grace L. Winter with bicycle, Calgary, Alberta, 1910-1929
Man on a bicycle, Crowsnest Pass, Alberta, 1915
Boy with bicycle on country road, Alberta, 1911-1916
Railway messenger with bicycle next to fence, Calgary, Alberta, 1910-1929
Eleanor Gabriel, wearing pants, with bicycle and fishing rod, Calgary, Alberta, 1950-1953
Florence Curson, school teacher, beside her bicycle, Tilley, Alberta, 1928
Tom Swanby on his bicycle with three friends, near Madden, Alberta, 1940
Barney Wolthuis on four-seated bicycle, Calgary, Alberta, 1940-1943
Maxine Fuller of the Canadian Women’s Army Corps, putting air in bicycle tire, Lougheed House, Calgary, Alberta, 1944-1946
Lee Semotonk McIsaac with decorated bicycle, Irricana, Alberta, 1948
Gerry Anderson on bicycle outside dorm at Olds College, Olds, Alberta, 1941
Edmonton Journal bicycle race, Edmonton, Alberta, 1919
Bicycle ride, Edmonton, Alberta, 1926
Bicycle competition at Journal, Edmonton, Alberta, 1928
Bicycles in Calgary Cycle Store window display, 1st St. E. between 7th and 8th Ave. E., Calgary, Alberta, n.d. Object #A14918
View of a street in Standard, Alberta. Unidentified men on bicycles, 1926. Object #A2258
Two women with bicycles standing by an AMA mileage sign in the Cypress Hills, Alberta, 1952. Object #A8471
Two men seated on tandem bicycle, house in background (Bob Smith is in front), 1940s. Object #A14924
Calgary Cycle Club member on bicycle, 1935. Object #A14920
Tom Smith riding bicycle on street outside of Stampede Corral, Calgary, Alberta, 1952. Object #A14928
Men with bicycles crossing the Elbow River at Elbow Drive and Sifton Boulevard, Calgary, in first post-war cross country bicycle race, 1947. Object #A14925
Annie Popil on bicycle, Radway, 1919. Object #A13390
Man on bicycle near the Cave and Basin, Banff, 1944. Object #A12132
John Litwin and Eli Antosko riding bicycles, Eldoreno, 1916. Object #A13389

The photos above were collected from the Glenbow Archives and the Provincial Archives of Alberta. If you’re interested, additional information can be found for each photograph on the Glenbow website by searching the identification number that is printed on the photo. There is also the option to purchase a high resolution copy. If you search the object number that can be found in the photo captions, you will find additional information about the photographs on the Provincial Archives website. Stay tuned for additional posts featuring historical photos from across Alberta. We’d love to know what you think in the comment section below.

About Tyler Dixon 169 Articles
Tyler is originally from Saskatchewan, and yes he cheers for the Roughriders, but don’t hold that against him as Calgary has been his home for the past eight years. He is a teacher working at a wilderness- based treatment program for youth working to overcome addiction. Tyler is also a volunteer with the GOT Parks initiative, which aims at reconnecting Canada’s youth with our national, provincial, and territorial parks. During his time away from work, Tyler enjoys outdoor activities, such as hiking, biking, and snowboarding, team sports, travelling, photography, spending time with good friends, and being at home with his wife and German Shepherd, Rome.