January 11, 2009

Wheels Through Time to Participate in Presidential Inauguration Parade

This 1918 Harley-Davidson with Sidecar, from the collection at Wheels Through Time, will be ridden during the Presidential Inauguration Day Parade in Washington, DC in celebration of the 90th Anniversary of the U.S. Army's 1919 Transcontinental Convoy on the Lincoln Highway.

1918 Harley-Davidson with Sidecar, from the collection at Wheels Through Time, will be ridden during the Presidential Inauguration Day Parade in Washington, DC in celebration of the 90th Anniversary of the U.S. Army

On January 20, 2009, the Wheels Through Time American Transportation Museum in Maggie Valley, NC will be making history once again — this time, participating in the 2009 Presidential Inauguration Day Parade. During the historic event, the motorcycle museum will bring a small fleet of WWI era motorcycles to Washington to participate in a procession celebrating the 90th Anniversary of the transcontinental Army motor convoy on the Lincoln Highway in 1919.

Completed in 1915, the Lincoln Highway was America’s first transcontinental highway, stretching from New York City to San Francisco, CA. Passing through 14 states, 128 counties, and over 500 cities, towns, and villages, the highway was America’s first major monument to President Abraham Lincoln, predating the Lincoln Memorial by over 9 years. The highway, which quickly became known as “The Main Street Across America”, was developed to improve interstate travel and to make easier the ability for citizens to travel from the Eastern United States to the Western states.

In late November 2008, Wheels Through Time Museum curator, Dale Walksler, was contacted by Craig Harmon, founder and director of the Lincoln Highway National Museum in Galion, Ohio about participating in the momentous event in January. As part of the parade, Walksler, Harmon, and a host of other participants will ride vintage motorcycles and automobiles in a procession celebrating the 90th anniversary of the United States Army’s first transcontinental motor convoy across the United States. Completed in 1919, the motor convoy began in Washington, DC and ran to San Francisco in an effort to determine how well troops could be moved from coast to coast. Over eighty vehicles made the 62-day trip, and through the rugged journey from east to west, U.S. Army observer Dwight D. Eisenhower, then a lieutenant colonel in the Army, began to develop his plan for an interstate highway system he would later implement during his presidency.

During the parade, sons and grandsons of Captain Arthur Herrington and Lt. Ralph Enos, two of the Army motorcycle pilots who completed the 1919 transcontinental convoy, will be riding along. Both Herrington and Enos had a long relationship with the motorcycle and automotive industries. Herrington, an accomplished racer for Harley-Davidson, worked for the Motor Company both before and after the war, and would later partner with Walter Marmon to create the Marmon-Herrington company, of which he would become president in 1931. Herrington would also create the first prototypes of the Marmon-Herrington Calvary Scout Car — what would later become the “Jeep”. Enos’ impact on the motorcycling world would be just as profound as that of his contemporary, as he would later go on to manage the Harley-Davidson factory racing team, contributing largely to Mr. Red Parkhurst’s world’s records at Daytona Beach in 1920. Soon after, he would serve briefly as assistant sales manager for the Excelsior Organization before returning to H-D for almost another 15 years, and by 1942, he would become the head of the Army’s motorcycle and bicycle division during WWII.

“Wheels Through Time is extremely honored to take part in such a historic event,” said museum curator, Dale Walksler. “Regardless of your political affiliation or involvement, this will be an event remembered for years to come. Again, we’re honored to be a part.”

For more information, visit the museum’s website, located at www.WheelsThroughTime.com, or call them at (828) 926-6266.

Filed under Random Ideas, Walksler's Blog by

Permalink Print

Comments on Wheels Through Time to Participate in Presidential Inauguration Parade

January 11, 2009

Buzz_Kanter @ 2:43 pm

What an honor for you guys! Congrats and have fun.

[…] has been diligently researching the convoy for years. According to an article in Classic American Iron Magazine: During the parade, sons and grandsons of Captain Arthur Herrington and Lt. Ralph Enos, two of the […]

Share/Save/Bookmark