Who was Major Taylor | League rights a wrong



WHEREAS, the League of American Bicyclists has members from every segment of our society and aspires to an even more diverse membership that reflects the diversity of America; and

WHEREAS, in commemoration of its return to Louisville, the site of the 1894 League of American Wheelmen convention, the League desires to acknowledge the wrong committed by that convention in approving a resolution offered by Colonel Watts to bar African-Americans from membership; and

WHEREAS, the League's bicycle racing arm disavowed the color bar and supported the rights of African-American racers to participate in the sport, including banned member Marshall "Major" Taylor, the African-American racing phenomenon of the 1890s; and

WHEREAS, the League has not been able to find records indicating formal revocation of the membership ban;

NOW, THEREFORE, the Board of Directors of the League of American Bicyclists hereby disavows the action of the 1894 League of American Wheelmen convention, repeals the 1894 Resolution and reaffirms our commitment to diversity of membership.  

In remembrance of his struggles to overcome racism and ignorance, and in recognition of his continuing contribution as a symbol of excellence in cycling and of overcoming adversity, we posthumously bestow on Major Taylor a League membership.

ADOPTED at the Annual Meeting this 5th day of June 1999, in Louisville, Kentucky

Earl F. Jones, President
David Takemoto-Weertz, Secretary
Jody Newman, Executive Director.

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