In May 2011, Jasmijn Rijcken—a Dutch citizen, cyclist, and employee of a Dutch bicycle company—was visiting New York for the New Amsterdam Bike Show. While taking a ride through the city she was stopped by a New York police officer, the Daily News reported, and told the length of her skirt was too short—disturbing and distracting to people in cars.
More than a century earlier, Angeline Allen of Newark, N.J., rode a bike through town wearing pants. "Dark blue corduroy bloomers, to be exact," writes author Margaret Guroff in her recent book, The Mechanical Horse: How the Bicycle Reshaped America Life. "Snug around the calves and puffy above the knees." Modest attire, to be sure, but shocking enough at the time to be reported on in the local paper.
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