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American Government Special Collections Reference Desk


The New York Times
April 8, 1914

Twenty Miles, Costing $12,000 a Mile, to be Built—England Fears Our Cycle Cars.

Five of the most important roads leading out of Chicago are to be improved with concrete construction as part of the first year's work under the new Illinois State-aid law.  The National Automobile Chamber of Commerce has been informed that twenty miles of concrete paving, divided between heavy teaming and market roads radiating in all directions, will be built.  The estimated cost of the new highways is $12,000 a mile. Gov. Dunne has issued a proclamation urging that April 15 be observed as "road day" throughout the State and that the citizens and good road organizations join the highway authorities on that day in helping to "pull Illinois out of the mud."  A formal beginning of State-aid work is to be made on April 20 when work will start on the Elgin-Aurora road.  This stretch is to be surfaced with concrete 18 feet wide and 8½ inches thick at the centre.  A distance of 17 miles along the Fox River will come under the State-aid provisions.


New England, somewhat contrary to her conservative traditions, seems to have taken the lead in cyclecar driving by women.  Miss Dorothy Sheldon of Dorchester, Mass., has just purchased one of these little vehicles and it is announced that she will compete in the two-day run of the New England Cyclecar Club, which starts on May 30.


Apparently England is a bit alarmed about an invasion of American cycle cars, although there were more than two score British makers of this type before the United States entered the field.  At any rate one of the English journals devoted to cycle car matters, Light Car and Cyclecar of London, has this to say after the recent arrival of 75 machines from this country:

"Months ago we predicted that an American cycle car invasion would come and now the first tangible proof of our prophecy has arrived.  Time after time we have warned our manufacturers, especially those in the Midlands, what to expect, and now that the first American cycle car has arrived and is running about on our roads, they will no doubt realize that our foresight was correct, while if the huge market waiting for the cheap but reliable cycle car is catered to successfully by the American productions, they will have no one to blame but themselves."


As a mark of esteem on the occasion of his seventieth birthday, there has been sent to Col. George Pope at Hartford, Conn., a leather bound book containing letters of congratulation from 1,000 of his friends.  Col. Pope, who is treasurer of the Auto Chamber of Commerce, is a veteran in the automobile and bicycle business.  The signatures of the letters, which were procured by a committee of which S. A. Miles was chairman, include those of almost every man now living prominent in the manufacture or sale of motor cars or bicycles.


"Automobile Row" heard yesterday of the appointment of Fred W. Warner as general manager of the Oakland Motor Car Company and of J. Jordan as office manager of the New York City branch of the Firestone Tire and Rubber Company.

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