For many, riding motorcycles gives users the unexplainable feeling of freedom, mental clarity, and pleasure. However, they weren't always used for personal enjoyment. When the United States entered WWI in April of 1917, they brought motorcycles along with the man power. Just under 100,000 motorcycles were manufactured by American companies Harley Davidson and Indian and sent overseas to aid soldiers in the front-line.
Unlike WWII, where soldiers used motorcycles primarily for transportation, during the first world war motorcycles played the role of a war machine and saw action. Motorcycles were outfitted with various sidecar mounted machine guns and placed together in motorized units called "Motor Mobile Infantry." They were also converted into ambulances that could carry one to two wounded causalities from the front-line back to safety.
Motorcycles also proved to be valuable for delivering messages during the war. Because electronic communication at the time was unreliable and not secure, using "dispatch riders" was the most effective way to deliver orders, maps, and reports between units.
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