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[img] Victor, American safety bicycle from the last decade of 19th century.

[img] Albert H.Overman, born in Illinois in 1850, started his own business in 1881. His first investor was his emploee, general McClurg from Jansen&McClurg publishing house in Chicago, where Overman had worked before. For nearly two decades Overman Wheel Company was producing Victor and Victoria bicycles ("Victoria" for ladies). The main factory was based in Chicopee Falls, Massachusetts. The company closed in 1898 due to a market crash.

"The Overman and Pope cycle companies were the American market leaders, and the most profuse in their advertising. Compare them, for example, to today’s market leaders in computers, Microsoft and Apple. Overman and Pope were constantly at each others’ throats, litigating and counter-litigating, spying on each others’ factories, and trying to outdo each other in production, quality, price and advertising. (...) In the end, such intense competition from both the top end of the American market and the bottom, with 300 companies vying for a slice of this booming business – and also dubious inflated stock market flotations – resulted in a bicycle industry market crash. Many cycle manufacturers were bankrupted. Overman was the largest, folding in 1898." from

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