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Apr 02, 2022

Author Michael Kranish at BFF

We are proud to welcome Washington Post investigative reporter Michael Kranish to the Mercer Museum in Doylestown on Friday April 29th as part of Bicycle Film Festival Bucks County. Doors will open at 5:30 PM and programming will conclude by 8 PM. Michael is the author of the 2019 biography The World's Fastest Man: The Extraordinary Life of Cyclist Major Taylor, America's First Black Sports Hero. The book is in the process of becoming a major motion picture. The discussion will be moderated by Mr. Artis Hall, Jr. of the Philadelphia Major Taylor Cycling Club. Tickets for the event are available here. Thank you to GoPro, Giant Bicycles, Dr. Beth Snyder DMD, Mr. Stuart Wilder Esq., the Central Bucks Bicycle Club, Webster Law, Repko Law, the Mercer Museum and Doylestown and Lahaska Bookshop for your support of this program.

At the turn of the last century, bike racing was the world's first mass popular sport. Crowds packed venues like Madison Square Garden to watch their favorites race on wooden ovals. Born prodigy, Marshall "Major" Taylor was the one of the first athletes to break the 'color line' in America and our first African-American world champion. Dogged by racism, Taylor traveled to Europe and Australia and achieved world fame. With bike racing falling out of favor, a World War, the Great Depression and and the racial climate of the post-Reconstruction era; Taylor was unable to parlay his fame into other businesses. Taylor wrote an autobiography extolling African-Americans to overcome bias through his example, and died selling it door-to-door. In the 1960's, his former opponents replaced his pauper headstone with one that reads: "World's champion bicycle racer who came up the hard way without hatred in his heart, an honest, courageous and God-fearing, clean-living gentlemanly athlete. A credit to his race who always gave out his best. Gone but not forgotten."

Michael Kranish is an investigative political reporter with the Washington Post and the author of The World's Fastest Man: The Extraordinary Life of Cyclist Major Taylor, America's First Black Sports Hero (2019).The book will be available for sale at this event courtesy of Doylestown & Lahaska Bookshop. Previously he was a reporter for papers of note such as the Miami Herald and Boston Globe. He has authored The Flight From Monticello: Thomas Jefferson at War (2016), John F. Kerry: The Boston Globe Biography (with Brian Mooney and Nina J. Easton, 2011), Trump Revealed: The Definitive Biography of the 45th President (with Scott Fisher, 2016), and The Real Romney (with Scott Helman, 2012). He was a co-winner of the 2013 Dirksen Award for Congressional reporting, the 2016 recipient of the Society for Professional Journalists Award for Washington Correspondence, and 2016 recipient of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers Award for Featuring Writing. He is a graduate of Syracuse University.

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