Get the rest of the story
Even Harley-Davidson can’t fit one hundred-plus years of history into a single museum. Experience more here – including an interactive timeline.
The famed "Bar & Shield" logo is used for the first time. It is trademarked at the U.S. Patent Office one year later.
At least seven different first place finishes are captured at races, endurance contests and hillclimbs across America. All seven winners are riding Harley-Davidson® motorcycles.
The "F-head" engine becomes a workhorse of the Harley-Davidson motorcycle until 1929.
Construction begins on what will become the six story headquarters and main factory building at Juneau Ave. in Milwaukee. A separate Parts and Accessories Department is formed.
H-D exports motorcycles to Japan, marking the first ever sales outside of the U.S. Dealer network grows to over 200 nationwide.
The Racing Department is formed, with William Ottaway as its first Assistant Engineer to racing engineer William S. Harley. Also, the Forecar delivery van is offered for the first time.
Sidecars are made available to Harley-Davidson buyers. Clutch and brake pedals now available on F-head singles and twins.
The Motor Company formally enters motorcycle racing this year. The first Racing Engineer is William S. Harley. Within a few short years, team Harley-Davidson is referred to informally as the "Wrecking Crew" because of their incredible dominance of the sport.
The Two-Speed rear hub transmission is introduced for two years only in the Model 10F. Patented by William S. Harley, it was effective but discontinued in order to further improve drivetrain function in 1915 with a three-speed design.
Harley-Davidson motorcycles are now available with three speed sliding-gear transmissions with final and primary drive on the same side.
The Enthusiast begins its reign as the longest continuously published motorcycle magazine in the world.
During this year, roughly one-third of all Harley-Davidson motorcycles produced are sold to the U.S. military. The Quartermasters School, a department of Harley-Davidson devoted to training military mechanics on Harley-Davidson motorcycles, opens for business in July. It will later become the Service School.
The sale of Harley-Davidson bicycles begins. Individual components are made by the Davis Sewing Machine Co. of Dayton, Ohio. The bicycles are sold through the H-D dealer network.
Almost half of all Harley-Davidson motorcycles produced are sold for use by the U.S. military in World War I. At War's end, it is estimated that the Army used some 20,000 motorcycles in their efforts, most of which were Harley-Davidsons. One day after the signing of the Armistice, Corporal Roy Holtz of Chippewa Falls, Wis., is the first American to enter Germany. He is riding a Harley-Davidson.
The 37 cubic inch opposed twin cylinder Sport model is introduced and gains great popularity overseas. Unique not only for the cylinder configuration, which was directly opposed and flat, the Sport quickly earns a reputation for being uncommonly quiet.