We’re making an educated guess on the date here, but we’re pretty close.
This Crown was born about a hundred years ago, and it’s held up really well. Built by the Great Western Manufacturing Company of LaPorte, Indiana, the bike showcases some nice artistic touches and fine manufacturing skill.
Great Western became a bike company in 1898 when four small builders combined their labor and capital into one. The merger made a large and successful bike company that continued until about 1920.
About half of the Crown bikes that we have seen feature their curly truss design, a touch that surely made for a stronger (and prettier) frame. Check out the Iver Johnson Truss design elsewhere in this section for a similar take on the idea. Modern bike companies know this aesthetic-design-as-product-improvement tactic really well. Come up with a design feature that looks cool, no matter how superficial, and you’re guaranteed to get more people on bikes.
Other nice touches include handlebars that support a comfortable riding position, a “Fauber Special” crankset that drives a New Departure model “A” hub, and cool flat-panel fenders.