1916 is a century behind us now, but the world was still just as unpredictable and wild back then. The world was at war, women were fighting for their rights, and two sisters decided to try and affect both. They planned a daring ride along the Lincoln Highway from New York to California, but what they were trying to accomplish was probably far more daring than the stunt itself.
Why Did Two Women Motorcycle Across The US 100 Years Ago?
Augusta and Adeline Van Buren, descendants of President Martin Van Buren, braved treacherous dirt roads, blistering deserts, looming mountains, and petulant police when they decided to go coast-to-coast on motorcycles. They faced incredible adversity and mother nature just to prove that women could be bike messengers for the army in World War I.
Their journey started on July 4th in Brooklyn, New York, traveled over Colorado’s Pikes Peak, and ended on the beaches of San Diego on September 8th. On the way, they were arrested for wearing men’s clothing and rescued by prospectors in the Utah desert, but they were relentless to prove that they could be messengers for our soldiers overseas.
To honor the Van Buren sisters’ ride, Indian Motorcycles is helping to sponsor the Sisters’ Centennial Motorcycle Ride. The ride begins July 3rd and will follow the approximate path the sisters took 100 years ago. Proceeds from the ride will go to Final Salute, Inc. and Women’s Coalition of Motorcyclists to support women soldiers looking for a place to live, and to train more women as motorcycle instructors.