Indian motorcycle, 1911.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Early Indian motorcycle with 497cc 3.5 hp single-cyclinder engine. In 1900, bicycle manufacturer George Hendee (1866-1943) joined forces with engineer Carl Oscar Hedstrom to form the Indian Motorcycle Company, and produced the first Indian motorcycle in 1901. The Indian and Harley-Davidson motorcycles were the most successful American machines, and both contributed significantly to motorcycle development during the early 20th century.