Indian Motorcycles in Newburgh, NY

from the Artsology series The Arts Adventurer

I took a day trip to Newburgh, NY today, and the first stop in town was a visit to the Motorcyclepedia Museum on Lake Street. While it looks like a relatively large building from the outside, it seems even bigger on the inside, with over 400 motorcycles spread out over two floors totaling 85,000 square feet.

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The museum is a family affair: Jerry Doering and his son Ted amassed this collection over a period of 60 years, with Jerry buying his first motorcycle - a 1929 Indian Scout - in 1947. He was fond of Indian motorcycles and bought several more, eventually realizing he was on his way to building a significant collection. He started filling in models from different years to the point where the collection now has one from every year between 1901 and 1953, which is the timeline of the original Indian Motorcycle Manufacturing Company from Springfield, MA.

a collection of vintage Indian motorcycles at the Motorcyclepedia Museum in Newburgh

The Indian motorcycles hold some personal interest for me, because my Dad told me years ago that he owned an Indian back in either the late 1950s or early 1960s. Unfortunately, I’m not sure what year or model he had, but it was fun today to imagine him owning any one of these motorcycles, as they were an impressive collection. The bikes at the top of the page are a green 1926 “Prince” Indian next to a red 1927 Indian, also a “Prince.” Below are two views of a blue 1947 Indian “Chief 347” with sidecar, one view from each side with an inset detail of the Indian head ornament from the wheelcover of the sidecar.

vintage Indian motorcycle on view in Newburgh

sidecar view of a 1947 Indian motorcycle at the Motorcyclepedia Museum in Newburgh

Here's a pair of vintage Indian motorcycle logos, as seen on the gas tanks of two different bikes. Below left is an Indian logo on the gas tank of a 1929 Indian GP/101 Scout, and below right is an Indian logo on a 1937 74ci "Chief" model Indian motorcycle.

1929 Indian Motorcycle GP/101 Scout

Indian head logo on a 1937 Indian motorcycle

There's a lot more to share from the visit to the Motorcyclepedia Museum ... here's an introduction to the "Wall of Death" motordrome.

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