Starting in the late 1800's, San Jose became infatuated with cycling and bicycle racing. In 1908, the San Jose Mercury decided to profile some of these early pioneers. This profile "Jim" V. McKiernan, son of the local legend "Mountain Charlie", is one of a series of articles written.
JAMES V. McKIERNAN, cycle pioneer, is a son of the late "Mountain Charlie" McKiernan, one of the most picturesque pioneers of California, and perhaps one of the best known in this part of the State. Mountain Charlie was a famous bear hunter and his log cabin, on the "Mountain Charlie" road in the Santa Cruz Mountains. is still pointed out to travelers. The "Mountain Charlie" road was formerly owned by Mountain Charlie and was a toll road. “Jim" McKiernan, the son, was a lieutenant of the old guard of the Garden City Wheelmen and pedaled one of the first San Jose “safeties" of the solid tire era.
The picture accompanying today’s sketch is a characteristic one of the times. Jim wore a regulation club cap with its gold lettering and braid, a short, natty military cost, rubber belt. Jersey trousers with yellow stripes and black hose. The cycle which he is supporting with both hands represents an outlay of something like $150, and was cherished as the apple of his eye. It was elaborately equipped with spring to offset the effect of the solid rubber tires jarring along rough roads. Today James V. McKiernan is rated in the San Jose directory as a vineyardist. He resides on South Fifth street with his family.
Although in the original cycling article it mentions that James McKiernan was a vineyardist, he also appears to have worked at California Wall Paper Co. on 2nd Street.
San Jose Mercury News, 30 March 1908