The myth and legend of the first skate deck is one shrouded in mystery. No one knows for sure how it all began, not even historians can make an account of it since no files or eyewitnesses who had the honor of being there exists at all. The only clue that we have are reports that talk about an unknown surfer that decided one day to take surfing into the street. He or she (or even them) was the first to put four wheels onto a board. To this date that person (henceforth called Adam) remains genderless, ageless, unidentified and anonymous, but still holds the title of being the first skater who ever lived despite the fact that his or her name is lost in history.
Genesis: Skateboarding Makes It's Appearance
We don’t have an exact date or location, but skateboarding was by most accounts started in California in the early 50’s when local surfers in Los Angeles, San Diego and the surrounding towns were seen taking to the streets, sidewalks and rails with this weird looking wooden surfboard that had wheels. But there is a missing earlier chapter, and that’s the story of Adam, the one who came out with the idea for the first deck.
Like we've said earlier, maybe he or she was one of those surfers proto-skaters, a pioneer of sorts, but we can’t be sure of it since no one knew who that person was to begin with. Maybe ‘he’ was conceiled as a collective identity by a secret community, we don’t know. Bill Richards was the name of a shop owner that first started to manufacture the first skateboards for sale, but he came later in the story. There are no potential candidates that fit the profile of Adam, since most surfers and skateboarders names back then were irrelevant since no culture or media existed.
In The Name of Skateboarding
Many have claimed to be the real Adam but were altogether debunked as posers and fakes over time. As the first settlers and nomadic hunter-gatherers who roamed the earth in mankind’s earliest times, Adam may very well have been a caveman that crawled to the surface with fire for his peers or a visitor from outer space with a high tech device that shared the knowledge of it to our race.
We are not even sure if he or she lives to this date, there’s no real evidence to support that Adam existed as a person or not. There’s no grave or monument to remind us about "him" but as long as there’s someone with a skateboard who has the power to tell the story of the legend that is Adam the myth will linger. Even though the story of the origins of skateboarding have no real evidence to support that the creator even existed, skaters all over the planet will continue to worship their decks through the rad legacy that is the skateboard.