guest post by Burstein!
In light of the awesomtastic bike trick video of Danny MacAskil currently making the rounds on the internet, it is worth reflecting on the storied and great history of bike tricks. There is a video of archival film featuring bicycle tricks whose description identifies the rider as Thomas A. Edison, however in fact, there is evidence that this is not the case.
The Edison Cataglog of Rutgers University have been organizing and publishing the 5 million pages of documents left behind by Edison. Within these documents are a series of kinetoscope films made by Edison Motion Pictures, and some (if not all) are documented on IMDB. According to the Edison Catalog and IMDB, the rider is not Edison but rather a certain “Neidert.” This has some corroboration as Eugene A. Neidert has been documented in the December 26th, 1893, edition of the New York Times [PDF] giving a “clever exhibition of trick riding.”