The Metz Bicycle Museum is home to one of the world's finest collections of antique bicycles that date back to the 1850's to the 1950's. David Metz, the proprietor of this museum, is a retired businessman who has lived in the Freehold Area all his life. He has been collecting antiques for almost 50 years.
Metz was born on a farm in Cranbury, New Jersey and was a farmer for many years. He is known in the international antique cycling circles and is a past captain of the New Jersey Wheelmen and a past National Commander of the Wheelmen organization with many members in foreign countries.
The Metz Bicycle Museum houses much more than bikes. The sign over the entrance to the museum reads "Treasures of Years Gone By." On display at the Metz Museum are antique mousetraps, kitchen and household gadgets, extensive collections of children's riding toys, cast iron bottle cap openers, antique cars, pencil sharpeners, and many more. Bicycle parts, such as oil lanterns, horns, bicycle tools, seats and posters complete the display.
There are different kinds of very unusual bicycles in the collection that, to the best of Mr. Metz?s knowledge, are the only ones that exist in the world today. His lamplighter bicycle is over eight feet tall and was used in New York City in the 1890s to light the gas street lights. The museum also has several trick bicycles used in side shows and circuses as well as a complete collection of handmade miniature reproductions of antique bicycles made by a prisoner of war in Belgium in the early 1940's.
One of the Museum?s prized possessions is the "Zimmy Bicycle? Metz obtained just five years ago. Arthur Zimmerman of Freehold, New Jersey was the world's first bicycle race champion in the 1880s and 1890s.
Most of the bicycles and many of the hundreds of other collectibles have a story that goes along with them. High-wheelers, Boneshakers, tricycles, ordinaries, quadri-cycles, safeties, children's bikes, trick bikes, and many more unusual and one-of-a kind cycles make up this fascinating collection.