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Friday, November 26, 2010

Royal Enfield motorcycles for sale in 1947
show that the company was going strong

Royal Enfield motorcycles are still so rare here in South Florida that sightings average about twice a year. The ads for Royal Enfield motorcycles listed on this blog give the impression that, at any one time, only a few used Royal Enfields are for sale in any one state. There just aren't that many Royal Enfields out there.

But here's a surprise: in Miami, in 1947, you could have your choice of half a dozen Royal Enfield motorcycles, listed for sale in the classified section of one day's newspaper.

Jorge Pullin often lists great Royal Enfield ads from the past on his web site, My Royal Enfields. That's what gave me the idea to check the on-line archives of the Miami Daily News, the city's evening newspaper, now long out of business.

The 1947 classifieds are a bit confusing, since the paper combined bicycles and motorcycles into the same listings and, of course, Royal Enfield made both. The two ads reproduced here are clearly for motorcycles.

B&K Cycle Shop at 5929 NW Second Ave. advertises "Enfields," implying they might have been a dealership. The address is now a restaurant and catering establishment in Miami's Little Haiti section but the building looks like it includes an enclosed yard. It would have made a good location for a motorcycle shop.

The number of ads suggests that Royal Enfield had an active trade going in the United States in 1947.

Jorge Pullin has detailed how this could be in his item on the post-war growth of Royal Enfield in the U.S. In particular, he mentions that the company's Major Mountford explored sales in the South in 1946.

Again today, the company is working hard expanding its business footprint across the U.S.

Interesting, isn't it, that when we look back in time we discover that our own era isn't so original after all.

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