Ohio Icon: Bishop's Bicycles

Ohio Icon: Bishop's Bicycles

The inside of Bishop's Bicycles, containing multiple bikes, bags, and shirts.

Photo by Damaine Vonada

Location: Historic downtown Milford near the Little Miami Scenic biking trail.

Provenance: After customers kept asking him to make bicycle parts and repairs, blacksmith John Bishop founded Bishop’s Bicycles in Winchester, Kentucky, in 1890. The shop moved to Cincinnati in 1910, subsequently relocated to Norwood and Silverton, then finally planted on Milford’s Main Street in 1971. Bruce Bishop sold the business in 2006, and now it’s owned by Greg and Lisa Linfert.

Significance: Bishop’s Bicycles is the oldest continuously operated bicycle shop in the United States. “We did a lot of research a few years ago, and the closest (in age) that we found was another bike shop started in 1891,” says Christian Bartholomew, an employee at the shop.

Currently: Having stood the test of time — from the bicycling craze that swept the nation during the 1890s to the trendy wheelies and 10-speeds of the 1970s to today’s bike-path boom — Bishop’s Bicycles is not only a popular stop for Little Miami Scenic Trail cyclists, but also a multigenerational destination. “People often tell us that they got their first bike at Bishop’s, then they bring their children and grandchildren here for their first bikes too,” Bartholomew says.

Bishop’s sells and rents an array of bicycles including comfort, fitness, road, mountain, touring, and youth bikes. Its best-seller is the Jamis Citizen series, but Bishop’s also is one of the few Ohio bike shops that carry Pedego electric bikes. Known for knowledgeable employees who provide great service, Bishop’s stocks bike parts and handles everything from tune-ups to rebuilding wheels. In addition, Bishop’s sells cycling apparel and helmets, holds bike maintenance and safety clinics, and hosts weekly rides on the Little Miami Scenic Trail.

It’s a little-known fact that: Bishop’s Bicycles operates a satellite location at the Milford Trailhead, a historic railroad depot overlooking the town and a bridge spanning the Little Miami River where, according to Bartholomew, they do a strong rentals business for customers who start riding the trail there.