I wish I'd found out about this in time for Black History month, but better late than never. In 1897, the Army had 20 Buffalo Soldiers try out the "new" safety bicycle to see if it would be useful to the Army. The men had to travel 41 days and 1,900 miles to complete the "test." A reporter went along for the ride, but, of course, he didn't ask them what they thought about the whole affair. Still, the official report and the news coverage of the soldier's journey helped promote cycling, possibly giving a sense of reality to the idea of bicycle touring. There are tons of news clippings, maps, pictures, route information, etc. at the 25th Infantry Bicycle Corps blog. Kudos, to Mr. Mike Higgins for assembling such an informative site on such a little known moment in history.