The founding of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club
On March 17, 1948 the first Hells Angels Motorcycle Club was founded in the Fontana/San Bernardino area in the
United States of America. About the same time, other clubs were formed in various places in the state of California,
but none of these clubs were associated with Hells Angels nor with each other. Most of them do not exist today, but
the Berdoo charter (San Bernadino) still do.
During the 1950's, more Hells Angels Charters came into existence. In the beginning the different charters had
nothing to do with each other, but after some years they united and a regular criteria of admission was laid down.
From having been exclusively a Californian phenomenon, the club developed internationally in 1961. It happened
when the first charter outside California was adopted – strangely enough – as far away as Auckland, New Zealand.
During the 1960's, Hells Angels spread out to the East Coast of the USA and later to the Midwest.
On July 30, 1969 - the first European Hells Angels charter was accepted in London, England. Today there are more
than 250 charters in Europe alone. At the end of the Seventies, Australian clubs were admitted and in 1984, Rio de
Janeiro, Brazil became the first South American charter. In 1993, Hells Angels came to the African continent with a
charter in Johannesburg, South Africa. Eastern Europe got its own Hells Angels charter in the new millennium and
since then many more countries have been granted the now famous winged Death Head.
Today the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club has spread its wings all over the World. From Alaska and Norway in the
high North, to South Africa and Argentina in the southern hemisphere. All around the globe from the Caribbean
Islands to Turkey, who became the first Muslim country to join the club in 2009.
The admission of clubs from all over the globe caused changes in the structure of the Hells Angels. The small
motorcycle club from Berdoo was now Mother Charter to the world´s biggest motorcycle brotherhood,
the HELLS ANGELS MOTORCYCLE CLUB WORLD. Today Hells Angels MC World has charters in North America,
Central America, South America, Europe, Australia, Africa and Asia.
After proving themselves in December of 1994, members of
the Chicago chapter of the Hells Henchmen motorcycle
club were granted membership into the Hells Angels along
with members from Rockford, Illinois and South Bend,
Since then, the Chicago chapter has grown to numerous
members living in Chicago and the Chicago-land area.
There are now 6 charters with members living in areas all
over Illinois and Indiana.
HELLS ANGELS and the skull logo (R) are trademarks owned by Hells Angels Motorcycle Corporation, registered world wide.
All logos and designs of Hells Angels are trademark-protected (TM) and protected according to international law.
Copying and other use is not allowed.
MC stands for Motorcycle Club. All members of HAMC World ride motorcycles.
81 is a metonym. It stands for the 8th letter of the alphabet which is an H, and the 1st letter of the alphabet which is
an A, HA = Hells Angels.
Red & White is another metonym; Red & White are the colors of the club. Red letters on a white background.
Colors are yet another metonym. Colors or Patch stand for any motorcycle club’s insignia. On the top of the back of
the vest is HELLS ANGELS, and the bottom is the Countries/States/Charters location. These are called rockers. In
the center is the logo called the Death Head, and the small square with MC stands for Motorcycle Club. The Hells
Angels, as well as most motorcycle clubs have copyrights on their name and logo.
Hells Angels paraphernalia is only for members of our club. No one else but us is allowed to produce, sell or buy
any items with the words HELLS ANGELS and our logo with our DEATH HEAD.
How do I join the club? If you have to ask, you probably will not understand the answer. Hells Angels are true
motorcycle enthusiasts and our motorcycle is our primary means of transportation. On the average a club member
will ride 20.000 kilometers plus a year. Each Charter varies in their requirements, but if you are really interested you
should talk to a member in your area. If you have to ask where the nearest Charter is …you are not ready to join our
Can my friends and I start a Hells Angels Charter? If you have to ask, you probably will not understand the
answer. Motorcycle Clubs consist of people who have ridden together for years, live in the same area, are known by
the community, have runs and parties, and are a brotherhood. It is a Motorcycle Club as opposed to an association
such as Harley Owners Group, or Goldwing Riders, which allow anyone to join as long as they have a Harley or
Goldwing. Not to say associations are better or worse, just different; they don’t ride 20,000+ a year together, or
know each other as well as you know your family, which is what a Motorcycle Club is about. If you’re already in a
Motorcycle Club you know how to start a Hells Angels Charter in your area, and if you’re not…well, that’s probably
why you asked the question in the first place.
Support merchandise 1. If you want to buy support gear, go to one of our support shops; check out the links on
this site or the Internet in general for original 81 Support Shops. Do not support imposters.
Support merchandise 2. Some people think that you have to own a Harley to wear or display club support
merchandise, but it’s not true. Your purchases show that you support the club’s philosophy of being free, brothers
who are locked down, and it also helps the local charter put on runs and events that motorcycle riders of all makes
of motorcycles and even those who don’t own a bike, enjoy.