In the Begining
The story of the Mid America Conference (MAC) begins in April, 1960, with the creation of what is now known as the Atlantic Motorcycle Coordinating Council, the first multi-state organization of this kind east of the Mississippi. According to the club news highlights for 1960 published in the last issue of WHEELS, the magazine of Cycle M.C., the founding clubs of the AMCC were 2nd City of Chicago, the Vikings of Boston, SMCLA and the Spartans, both of Washington, D.C. Its insignia was designed by Roger Torkelson of Second City, and the summer run hosted by Second City M.C. of Chicago in Michigan in July, 1969 was its first “official” run. In the same month, Empire City M.C., the Rocky Mountaineers of Denver and S.N.C. joined the AMCC. In February, 1970, the AMCC changed its name to the Atlantic Midwest Coordinating Concil and WHEELS was “designated best vehicle for disseminating Council news.” The importance of this organization is that it provided a model for all later regional conferences such as the MAC. The AMCC met quarterly, and gradually clubs outside the area began to be aware of its existence. It thus served as the model from which all subsequent organizing of leather/levi clubs in the East, Midwest and South would be drawn.
An entry in the June/July, 1973 issue of LINKS, the newsletter of Second City M.C. of Chicago, records the beginning of the conference in some detail: “On Saturday afternoon, during 2 Becomes 8, our Captain hosted a brunch for the President and one other member from each club in attendance. After the brunch, a short meeting was held to give birth to the Mid West Conference. It was decided that no officers would be elected, no clubs voted in or out, and any club that considered themselves a Midwest club would be invited to participate. Attending the meeting were representatives of the following clubs: Unicorns (Cleveland), Cin City (Cincinnati), Tribe (Detroit), Atons (Minneapolis), Silver Star M.C. (Milwaukee), Chicago Knights (Chicago), Hellfires (Chicago), 2nd City (Chicago) and the Omaha Meatpackers. Attending as guests were the Vanguards and Keystone Riders of Philadelphia. It was decided that we would attempt to attend each others functions as much as practical. However, since most of us have limited funds we decided that we would promote one major event for each club during any given year.” The date was April 28, 1973, the start of several decades of growth and change across an area stretching eventually from Denver to Columbus and Green Bay to New Orleans and Atlanta. The “Captain” mentioned in the article was Frank Thomas, President of Second City.
In the November, 1974 issue of WHEELS, the monthly club news magazine issued by Cycle M.C. of New York City, which printed news reports from many clubs within what was then termed the Atlantic Midwest Coordinating Council in the column Inner-Cycle, note is taken of the resignation of Atlantis MC from the AMCC, a note which reads in part “we believe that the efforts we have exerted in AMCC can be more productive by participation in the Mid-West Council.” It would thus appear that one of the of the initial original names of what was to become known as the Mid America Conference was the Midwest Council, said name being modeled on the AMCC name. It was also known as the Midwest Conference, a reference made in the history of Second City M.C. written by Don Kubiak in the spring of 1975, viz. “part of the history of 2nd City M.C. must, of course include its part in the formation of the Midwest Conference, which is today called Mid-America Conference.” The Atlantic article fits with the known data from the Midwest, where the new body formed in September, 1974. The name Mid America Conference was apparently established as the chosen organizational name by the spring of 1975. The formation of the MAC was apparently the result of at least two meetings of club delegates or officers from groups within the region. This is indicated by a news report from groups within the region. This is indicated by a news report from the March, 974 issue of WHEELS noting that the 1974 “Do A Fool” run in Detroit sponsored by Tribe MC in April” was also host to the second Midwest Conference.” It is possible that the date we celebrate each September reflects the date of formal incorporation rather than actual founding.
The Mid America Conference of Motorcycle Clubs, Inc. was formally incorporated as a nonprofit organization in the State of Illinois in September of 1974.
Clubs which existed in the future MAC region as of 1974 were the Atons of Minneapolis, the Stallions of Cleveland, Tribe MC of Detroit, Second City of Chicago. Chicago Hellfire Club, the Argonauts of Green Bay, Wisconsin, the knights d’Orleans, Chicago Knight, Unicorn MC or Cleveland, Gateway MC of St. Louis, Atlantis MC of Atlanta, the Celtics MC of Jackson, Mississippi, Silver Star of Milwaukee, The Pride, Chicago, the Selectmen of Detroit, and Rodeo Riders. It was out of this group that the founder organizations of the MAC came.
By March, 1975, membership in the Mid America Conference stood at twenty-four clubs. They were: Unicorn M.C., Stallions, Tribe, Selectmen, Cin City, Atons, Chicago Knights, 2nd City, Hellfire, Pride, Trade Winds, Argonauts, Silver Star, Gateway M.C., Falcons, Meatpackers, Breeders, Wranglers, Houston M.C., Celtics (3 chapters), Atlantis M.C. and the Rocky Mountaineers. (The above list is taken from an article posted to WHEELS magazine by Tad Currie of Atlantis M.C., coordinator of the Conference, in March, 1975). This number had grown to 26 by the annual business meeting and election of officers held in New Orleans on October 9, 1976, jointly hosted by the Celtics M.C. (celebrating their fourth anniversary) and the Knights d’Orleans, then one year old. At that meeting, the Blue Max M.C. of St. Louis was seated in the house of delegates, bringing the Conference to 27 clubs. Three additional clubs were also proposed for membership at this meeting.
(This history was prepared by MACC Historian Rob Ridinger)