Juliette Garnier and M. Poisson - 1923 photo

Poisson and Ganier - photo main image

Juliette Garnier and Monsieur Poisson seem to be having a whale of a time (geddit?) on their tandem at the 1923 Championnat de la Bicyclette Polymultipliée. They seem to have won a 'portefeuille' (wallet?) for being the third oldest finishers (presumably Monsieur Poisson is the venerable one).

They are riding a Desvages tandem fitted with a Le Chemineau derailleur. Writing in the 27/11/23 edition of La Pédale magazine, M. Desvages, the builder of the tandem comments:

  • "A la suite de l’épreuve de Chanteloup, où mon tandem monté par Poisson, 51 ans, mutilé de guerre et ma caissière Juliette Ganier, dont la bonne tenue et la correction en course firent beaucoup pour la cause de la poly, la même U.V.F. n’a-t-elle par pris la décision d’interdire à l’avenir les femmes dans toute compétition sportif! Qui cela pouvait-il gêner qu’une maison puisse prouver ce que l’on pouvait tirer d’une femme bien outillée?…"
  • This might loosely translate as something like ..."Following the Chanteloup test, where my tandem ridden by M. Poisson, a 51 year old disabled war veteran, and my cashier Juliette Ganier, did much for the cause of the poly with their fine and disciplined performance, but has not the ... U.V.F. (the French Cycling Authorities) decided to ban women from any sporting competition in the future? What would an organisation have to lose by finding out what could be learned from a competent woman?..."

In my youth, feminists used to chant the obvious truth that 'a woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle'. I think that they may have been understating their case - I doubt that Madamoiselle Ganier needs a man nearly as much as Monsieur Poisson clearly needs that derailleur geared tandem...or am I getting confused.

(Source gallica.bnf.fr/ Bibliothèque nationale de France)

Poisson and Ganier - photo main image
Poisson and Ganier - photo additional image 01