Did you know…?
Did you know that without the Kinetoscope invented by the Edison laboratory, motion pictures as we know them today might not exist?
Edison devised what was perhaps the most important motion picture innovation of all time and used it to record bicycle tricks – that really shows how much appeal cycling stunts had to mass audiences of that time. None of that appeal has diminished today!
After doing a bit of research I learned that the rider was in fact “Neilbert”, who previously worked in the circus. Now back in the day, bicycles were still a major circus act and if you have the time to visit one now, you will notice how often they are still used (albeit in more awe-inspiring circumstances).
Edison was the one who filmed the clip, which apparently was in 1899 (more than 110 years now!!). While he is famous for the light bulb, Edison was also responsible for numerous other inventions. He built the Kinetograph (now known as the motion picture camera) and the Kinetoscope (a peep-hole motion picture viewer).
Don’t rush to give Edison all the credit because his assistant William Kennedy Laurie Dickson played a huge role in the development of these inventions. Edison’s invention was the stepping-stone to cinema and video, as we know it today. Without his inventions we could still be living in a dark and boring world.
Just imagine that the earliest cameras were actually used to film bicycle tricks!! It still amazes me that the bicycle has still maintained its basic design for more than a century while the camera has evolved from Edison’s invention to something even he could never have imagined.
Last Word About The Bicycle Trick Thomas Edison
I have not tired the tricks on this clip and I don’t think I have the capacity to carry them out but they are certainly very impressive. As you can see, the rider on the Bicycle Trick Thomas Edison video does not have the traditional protection that most of us now take for granted while going cycling.