Who We Are
From the street to the track to the trail, millions of Americans enjoy motorcycling. Some ride to work every day. Others ride for pleasure on weekends. Many ride off-road, or journey to places near and far. Still more seek the thrill of competition.Since 1924, the AMA has protected the future of motorcycling and promoted the motorcycle lifestyle. AMA members come from all walks of life, and they navigate many different routes on their journey to the same destination: freedom on two wheels. As the world’s largest motorcycling organization, the AMA advocates for motorcyclists’ interests in the halls of local, state and federal government, the committees of international governing organizations, and the court of public opinion.Through member clubs, promoters and partners, the AMA sanctions more motorsports competition and motorcycle recreational events than any other organization in the world. Through its Motorcycle Hall of Fame, the AMA preserves the heritage of motorcycling for future generations. AMA members receive money saving discounts from dozens of well-known suppliers of motorcycle services, gear and apparel, bike rental, transport, hotel stays and more. The AMA is everything motorcycle.
The History Of The AMA
Today, it seems only logical that motorcyclists would have their own organization to address the issues that are important to them. But at the time the AMA was founded, this was a rather revolutionary concept.To fully understand the emergence of the AMA as the world’s premier member-driven motorcycling organization, it is first necessary to understand the forces that led to its creation. In large part, the roots of the AMA can be traced to two organizations that preceded it, the Federation of American Motorcyclists (FAM) and the Motorcycle and Allied Trades Association (M&ATA).The formation of the FAM can be traced to the New York Motorcycle Club, whose members in early 1903 saw the need for a national motorcyclist organization and assembled a committee to study the interest level in such an organization. Further momentum for the creation of this organization was provided by the enactment of a New York City law requiring registration of motorcycles as motor vehicles.
On September 7, 1903, the FAM was officially formed during a meeting of 93 enthusiasts at a clubhouse in Brooklyn. The meeting was chaired by George H. Perry, and one notable attendee was George M. Hendee of the Indian Motocycle Company, who brought 109 membership pledges from the New England area.
A constitution was drawn up, and officers appointed, with R.G. Betts of New York as president. Article I, section 2 of the constitution of the newly created FAM stated: “Its objects shall be to encourage the use of motorcycles and to promote the general interests of motorcycling; to ascertain, defend and protect the rights of motorcyclists; to facilitate touring; to assist in the good roads movement; and to advise and assist in the regulation of motorcycle racing and other competition in which motorcycles engage.” The constitution also recorded annual membership dues of $2, and named several committees, including: Membership; Legal Action; Competition; Roads, Touring and Hotels; and Transportation and Facilities.
During its 16-year existence, the FAM developed competition rules and rider classifications, dealt with restrictive ordinances in cities like Chicago and Tacoma, Washington, and wrestled with funding and membership concerns. The FAM listed 8,247 members in 1915, but with World War I draining potential members, the organization went out of business in 1919.
AMA Mission Statement
The mission of the American Motorcyclist Association is to promote the motorcycling lifestyle and protect the future of motorcycling.