Harley-Davidson Motorcycle, 1942

The only American motorcycle manufacturer still in existence from the early twentieth century is the Harley-Davidson Motor Company, which was founded in 1903. At the outset of World War II, Harley-Davidson was producing motorcycles for the British government on contract. By 1942 the company was producing more than 29,000 motorcycles per year, mostly for the United States Army. However, its 1942 brochure continued to list bikes for the civilian market, if people could afford the purchase price and find gasoline to keep it running. The museum’s 74 OHV twin was the largest model available, and it was offered in four different color schemes. This example was built in 1942 for Jorge Ubico, who was president of Guatemala from 1931 to 1944. He ordered several custom modifications and rode the motorcycle on recreational trips and inspection trips.
Object Name
date made
Cohen, Alfredo
overall: 48 in x 32 in x 93 in; 121.92 cm x 81.28 cm x 236.22 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Road Transportation
See more items in
Work and Industry: Transportation, Road
Road Transportation
Road Transportation
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of Alfredo Cohen

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