Death of Colonel Albert Pope

This article concerning the passing bicycling and automotive pioneer Colonel Albert Pope first appeared in the August 11, 1909, Indianapolis News. It was supported by an image found elsewhere on First Super Speedway.
The article reports that Pope had been ill for months, apparently due to stress from the poor financial performance of his bicycle company. The company, according to this information, was the largest concern of its kind at the time. It was headquartered in Hartford, Connecticut. 
Boston-born Pope came into the world May 20, 1843, and was raised in Brookine, Massachusetts where he went to public school. As a teen, after his father met with financial reversals, he worked in the Quincy Market until the Civil War started and he enlisted in the Thirty-Fifth Massachusetts infantry at age 18. He was successful in the military, rising rapidly through the ranks. He was brevetted a lieutenant colonel when mustered out of service after the war. He was recognized for "brilliant conduct" at the battles of Fredericksburg, Knoxville, Poplar Springs Church, and Petersburg.
Post-war, he entered business making supplies for shoe manufacturers. In 1876 he noted that bicycles imported into the United States were met with enthusiasm. He founded the Pope Manufacturing Company which led him to become a millionaire. As with many in the era, those involved with bicycle industry transitioned to, with the advent of the internal combustion engine, to the automobile industry. 
Pope organized the Pope Motor Company as a subsidiary of the Pope Manufacturing Company. The company launched into the fast-growing market for automobiles. He introduced automobiles that were presented under several brands, including Pope-Hartford and Pope-Toledo. These models were the result of a spree of company acquisitions and the names were chosen due to the city in which the factories were located. Pope met with hardship from the financial panic of 1907 and my impression is that he never really recovered. His company eventually went into receivership and survived several more years to eventually sell off its assets.
Pope was an advocate for the good roads movement. The article indicates that he served as a board director in banks and corporations. His membership in the Loyal Legion Society and the Society of Cincinnati is noted, as is his board affiliations at Wellesley College, Lawrence Scientific School, and Harvard University.
What isn't reported in the attached article is that Colonel Pope played an important role in the progress of Indianapolis Motor Speedway Founder and President Carl G. Fisher's career. As a teen in the 1890's Fisher lobbied Pope to give him favorable terms to sell his bicycles in a new shop he had created in downtown Indianapolis. Pope was impressed with the young man and perhaps was reminded of a younger version of himself when he decided to provide Fisher inventory. Fisher was a master of promotion and drew attention to the exciting new product that was the focus of a national trend in those times.

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