Athletics at the 1904 Summer Olympics

Athletics
at the Games of the III Olympiad
Athletics pictogram.svg
Athletics pictogram
VenueFrancis Olympic Field
Dates29 August – 3 September
No. of events25
Competitors233 from 10 nations
← 1900
1908 →

At the 1904 Summer Olympics, twenty-five athletics events were contested. A total of 74 medals (25 gold, 25 silver and 24 bronze) were awarded.

Multi-event competitions, the all-around and triathlon, were introduced, along with a 56-pound weight throw, while the short steeplechase was lengthened slightly from 2500 to 2590 metres, the team race was lengthened from 5000 meters to 4 miles (6,437 m), and the long steeplechase was dropped.

In all, the 25 events featured in 1904 were 2 more than were held in 1900.

A track was built specifically for the Games on the campus of Washington University in St. Louis. The cinder track was 1/3 mile in length with one long straightaway.[1]

Medal summary

Event Gold Silver Bronze
60 metres
details
Archie Hahn
 United States
William Hogenson
 United States
Fay Moulton
 United States
100 metres
details
Archie Hahn
 United States
Nate Cartmell
 United States
William Hogenson
 United States
200 metres
details
Archie Hahn
 United States
Nate Cartmell
 United States
William Hogenson
 United States
400 metres
details
Harry Hillman
 United States
Frank Waller
 United States
Herman Groman
 United States
800 metres
details
James Lightbody
 United States
Howard Valentine
 United States
Emil Breitkreutz
 United States
1500 metres
details
James Lightbody
 United States
Frank Verner
 United States
Lacey Hearn
 United States
Marathon
details
Thomas Hicks
 United States
Albert Corey
 France
Arthur Newton
 United States
110 metres hurdles
details
Fred Schule
 United States
Thaddeus Shideler
 United States
Lesley Ashburner
 United States
200 metres hurdles
details
Harry Hillman
 United States
Frank Castleman
 United States
George Poage
 United States
400 metres hurdles
details
Harry Hillman
 United States
Frank Waller
 United States
George Poage
 United States
2590 metres steeplechase
details
James Lightbody
 United States
John Daly[2]
 Great Britain
Arthur Newton
 United States
4 miles team race
details
 United States (USA)
New York AC
Arthur Newton
George Underwood
Paul Pilgrim
Howard Valentine
David Munson
 Mixed team (ZZX)
Chicago AA
James Lightbody
Frank Verner
Lacey Hearn
Albert Corey (FRA)
Sidney Hatch
none awarded
Long jump
details
Myer Prinstein
 United States
Daniel Frank
 United States
Robert Stangland
 United States
Triple jump
details
Myer Prinstein
 United States
Fred Englehardt
 United States
Robert Stangland
 United States
High jump
details
Samuel Jones
 United States
Garrett Serviss
 United States
Paul Weinstein
 Germany
Pole vault
details
Charles Dvorak
 United States
LeRoy Samse
 United States
Louis Wilkins
 United States
Standing long jump
details
Ray Ewry
 United States
Charles King
 United States
John Biller
 United States
Standing triple jump
details
Ray Ewry
 United States
Charles King
 United States
Joseph Stadler
 United States
Standing high jump
details
Ray Ewry
 United States
Joseph Stadler
 United States
Lawson Robertson
 United States
Shot put
details
Ralph Rose
 United States
Wesley Coe
 United States
Lawrence Feuerbach
 United States
Discus throw
details
Martin Sheridan
 United States
Ralph Rose
 United States
Nicolaos Georgandas
 Greece
Hammer throw
details
John Flanagan
 United States
John DeWitt
 United States
Ralph Rose
 United States
56 pound weight throw
details
Étienne Desmarteau
 Canada
John Flanagan
 United States
James Mitchell
 United States
Triathlon
details
Max Emmerich
 United States
John Grieb
 United States
William Merz
 United States
All-around
details
Tom Kiely
 Great Britain[3]
Adam Gunn
 United States
Truxtun Hare
 United States

Medal table

RankNationGoldSilverBronzeTotal
1 United States23222267
2 Great Britain1102
3 Canada1001
4 France0101
 Mixed team0101
6 Germany0011
 Greece0011
Totals (7 entries)25252474

Participating nations

233 athletes from 11 nations competed. This figure includes the athletic triathlon event, which some sources exclude.

Marathon

The marathon was the most bizarre event of the Games. It was run in brutally hot weather, over dusty roads, with horses and automobiles clearing the way and creating dust clouds.[4]

Hicks and his supporters at the marathon

The first to arrive at the finish line was Frederick Lorz, who actually rode the rest of the way in a car to retrieve his clothes, after dropping out after nine miles, but after the car broke down at the 19th mile, he re-entered the race and jogged back to the finish line.

As officials and fans believed he had won the race, Lorz played along with his practical joke until he was found out shortly before the medal ceremony. He admitted the ruse, and was banned for life by the AAU; however, after Lorz apologized for this stunt and it was found he had no intention to defraud, he was reinstated, and won the 1905 Boston Marathon.[5]

Felix Carvajal on his way to 4th in the marathon

Thomas Hicks was the first to the finish legally, after having received from his trainers several doses of strychnine sulfate (a common rat poison, which stimulates the nervous system in small doses) mixed with egg whites and brandy.[6] While he was supported by his trainers when he crossed the finish line, he is still considered the winner: Hicks had to be carried off the track on a stretcher, and possibly would have died in the stadium had he not been treated by several doctors. He lost eight pounds during the course of the marathon.

A Cuban postman named Felix Carvajal joined the marathon, arriving at the last minute. He had to run in street clothes that a fellow runner cut around the legs to make them look like shorts. He stopped off in an orchard en route to have a snack on some apples which turned out to be rotten, and caused him to have to lie down and take a nap. Despite falling ill from the apples, he finished in fourth place.[7][8]

References

  1. ^ "Athletics at the 1904 Summer Olympics". Olympedia. Retrieved 3 September 2001.
  2. ^ Daly represented Ireland in this event, but the IOC lists him as competing for Great Britain, which Ireland was part of at the time.
  3. ^ Kiely represented Ireland in this event, but the IOC lists him as competing for Great Britain, which Ireland was part of at the time.
  4. ^ "The 1904 Olympic Marathon May Have Been the Strangest Ever | History | Smithsonian Magazine".
  5. ^ Cronin, Brian (2010-08-10). "Sports Legend Revealed: A marathon runner nearly died". Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles.
  6. ^ Martin, David E.; Gynn, Roger W. H. (2000). The Olympic Marathon. Human Kinetics. p. 48. ISBN 9780880119696.
  7. ^ Abbott, Karen. "The 1904 Olympic Marathon May Have Been the Strangest Ever". Smithsonian.com. Retrieved April 8, 2015.
  8. ^ Martin, David E.; Gynn, Roger W. H. (2000). The Olympic Marathon. Human Kinetics. p. 50. ISBN 9780880119696.

External links