Title: Zenith Cycles ARE THE BEST.>>ORIGINAL CYCLE ...
Publisher: RUDGE WEDGE & CO. WOLVERHAMPTON.
Publication Date: 1892
Binding: No Binding
Book Condition: Very Good
Signed: Signed by Illustrator
Original hand-drawn and hand-coloured advertising design proof for Rudge and Wedge, whose fledgling cycle company had only been formed in the previous year. Design produced by Ben Johnson & Co. of York. Measures approx. 9" x 7" (23cm x 17.75cm). Their stamp to rear is dated December 22nd, 1892. The bicycle litho is laid down onto the paper. Otherwise, all lettering and decoration seen was drawn and applied by hand. Pencil annotation below the cycle states: "Note. Cycle can be made to fill space better - say from A to B." An addition to this, in small neat ink, says "Leave to you". Another faint pencil inscription at lower margin states: "Proportionate Sketch for Poster" alongside what appears to be a creator's signature and, again lightly penciled, "Ben Johnson & Co. York." Showing two vertical folds and one horizontal, though sits nice and flat. However, there's some relatively light rippling, most likely caused by the original paints and paper type. Patches of residue to the rear, where the design has been fixed down at some point. And generally some discolouration, occasional marking and rubbing here and there, commensurate with age. Rudge, Wedge & Co. Limited- Harry Rudge was the eldest son of Daniel Rudge, who founded Rudge cycles. In 1891, he joined Mr. C. Wedge to form Rudge Wedge & Co. They set up a cycle works at Pelham Street, and in 1902 moved to new works in Mander Street. They also built a few motorcycles, but decided to concentrate solely on building pedal bicycles. Many of their products were supplied to the trade with their own or customer's transfers and large numbers of their machines were exported to the colonies. The popular models of the firm for the approaching season were the "Rudge Wedge" tandem for two gentlemen or lady and gentleman riders, racers, road racers, roadsters, ladies safeties. Made in Nos. 5, 6 and 7 patterns, and "unsurpassed in workmanship, finish and through reliability" [1895 catalogue of Rudge, Wedge]. I cannot see any references to the continued existence of Rudge Wedge post WW1. A fine original & unique survivor. Seller Inventory # 5191