The History of Inline Skating

History, of course, is all reconstructive (and mostly hooey!). But it's kinda fun. ... These links provide some entertaining tidbits about the history of inline skating.

"Faster - Smoother - Easier Skating: Only $4.95 a Pair"
Inexpensive, inline and ignored ... Christian Siffert's inline skates from 1938 had lots of things going for them, even a heel brake that looks very similar to the ones found on modern inline skates. And the price? Unbeatable at $4.95 a pair! Here's a story about them, including an ad featuring them in a 1948 issue of Popular Mechanics, which was sent to me by Rollerblade founder Scott Olson. ... It would be fun to try these skates. Looks like they would roll just fine. (Tuesday, January 4, 2005)

The Illustrated History of Inline Skate Design at the U.S. Patent Office
The U.S. Patent Office is a treasure trove of information about the history of inline skating. And I've been raiding the
place! The result is a work in progress: The Illustrated History of Inline Skate Design at the U.S. Patent Office. I've started a patent gallery, which you'll find here. I've also posted a story about the first skate in the gallery -- Shaler's rubber-belted Parlor Skate from 1860. Check it out! (Thursday, December 30, 2004)

The National Museum of Roller Skates' Inline History ... A short but sweet history of inline skates from the National Museum of Roller Skates, in Lincoln, Nebraska. They even have a photo of the inline skate made by the Chicago Roller Skate Company that Scott Olson used as inspiration for Rollerblades.

An Inline History That Looks at Motive ... This is a quick history with a human angle. ... One thing I don't get. Why doesn't it mention the "skeeler"? Still a nice piece.

A History of Skating on Wheels ... Here's a straight ahead account of the evolution of skates from ice to land. ... And a great old photo of a 'skeeler.' Check it out!


Copyright © 2005 by Robert Burnson

Planet Extras!
Ultra-Distance Champ Kim Perkins Tells Her Story
Fila Plans to Enter U.S. Skate Market
Salomon to Abandon U.S. Skate Market
Skate Mom Rolls to Rescue of World Team
Rollerblade Sales Jump by 10 Percent
Matzger Plans Skate Farm

The Basics
Beginner's Guide to Inline Skating!
Top Seven Mistakes of Inline Skaters
Protection From Mr. Bumpy
First Time Buying Guide
News Departments
Product News
Skating Events and Updates
Racing News
Skate Industry News
Skate Governing Bodies
Skaters in the News
Olympic Inclusion

Skate Trips and Travel
Where to Skate
Race Previews
Race Reports
Racing Skates and Equipment

Inline Marathoning
Advanced Skating Skills
How to Skate Safely
Skates Previews
Product Reviews
Buyers Guide
Skate Maintenance
Speed Skating
Inline Downhill
Roller Hockey
Aggressive Skating
• Artistic Skating
The Inline Edge!
If You're Injured
Skating Laws
Inline History
Planet Forum