This classic image taken in 1901 shows American cycling pioneer Charles “Mile a Minute” Murphy competing in a roller race aginst Tom Butler. Though more famous for his one mile in one minute speed record behind a train (see links below) this image and a near identical one of him with Frank Albert show that Roller-Racing was popular, as was bike-racing in general, in late 19th early 20th century America. This photo has in recent times made Murphy (real name Charles) a roller-racing / goldsprints icon.
Murphy held many cycling records and medals and also performed in a touring roller-race Vaudeville act between October 1900 and January 1901 alongside another cycling legend Marshall “Major” Taylor, the first black world champion in any sport.
More about Mile a Minute Murphy: