Lapel pins and buttons were a popular advertising method in the late 19th century and continued to be such through the 20th century. In the late 1890’s bicycle manufacturers sized on this to promote their bikes. There were numerous bicycle trade shows in the largest cities of the United States and all the bicycle manufacturers who had booths gave out these pins and buttons to promote their bikes.  

 Whitehead & Hoag Co., Newark NJ USA is the company that made most of them, July of 1896 being the latest patent date on the majority.

 The Wheelmen website lists 3150 bicycle manufacturers from 1890 to 1918. It seems a large portion of those companies gave out these popular promotions and they are eagerly collected today. Here is just a few that I have collected.

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 The Columbia pin the left in the picture below is often found flattened or widened out but this is the correct and original way they were produced. They are fairly common but this is the only example of the “Columbia Pneumatic” tire pin I have come across.

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 The Falcon Cycle pin in the middle of the picture below is actually a cuff link and is ceramic. I have the set of two.

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