Rowing at the 1900 Summer Olympics

at the Games of the II Olympiad
Rowing pictogram.svg
Dates25–26 August 1900
Competitors108 from 8 nations
1904 →
Rowing at the 1900 Summer Olympics is located in Paris
Asnières Bridge
Asnières Bridge
Courbevoie Bridge
Courbevoie Bridge
Location of the regatta venue

At the 1900 Summer Olympics in Paris, four events in rowing were contested, marking the introduction of the sport to the Olympic program.[1] At the inaugural 1896 Games, the rowing competition was cancelled due to strong winds. The 1900 regatta was held on the Seine between the Courbevoie Bridge and the Asnières Bridge on 25 and 26 August.[2] The length of the regatta course was 1,750 metres (5,740 ft; 1.09 mi).[3] Two finals were held in the coxed four competition, with both finals being considered Olympic championships.[4] Thus, there were a total of five rowing championships awarded.

Medal summary

Event Gold Silver Bronze
Single sculls
 Hermann Barrelet (FRA)  André Gaudin (FRA)  Saint-George Ashe (GBR)
Coxed pair
 Mixed team (ZZX)[5]
Minerva Amsterdam
François Brandt
Roelof Klein
Hermanus Brockmann[6]
unknown boy[7] (FRA)
 France (FRA)
Société Nautique de la Marne
Lucien Martinet
René Waleff
unknown cox
 France (FRA)
Rowing Club Castillon
Carlos Deltour
Antoine Védrenne
Raoul Paoli
Coxed four Final 1[4]
 France (FRA)
Cercle de l'Aviron Roubaix
Henri Bouckaert
Jean Cau
Émile Delchambre
Henri Hazebrouck
 France (FRA)
Club Nautique de Lyon
Georges Lumpp
Charles Perrin
Daniel Soubeyran
Émile Wegelin
unknown cox
 Germany (GER)
Favorite Hammonia
Wilhelm Carstens
Julius Körner
Adolf Möller
Hugo Rüster
Gustav Moths[8]
Max Ammermann
Coxed four Final 2
 Germany (GER)
Germania Ruder Club, Hamburg
Gustav Goßler
Oskar Goßler
Walter Katzenstein
Waldemar Tietgens
Carl Goßler
 Netherlands (NED)
Minerva Amsterdam
Coenraad Hiebendaal
Geert Lotsij
Paul Lotsij
Johannes Terwogt
Hermanus Brockmann
 Germany (GER)
Ludwigshafener Ruderverein
Ernst Felle
Otto Fickeisen
Carl Lehle
Hermann Wilker
Franz Kröwerath
 United States (USA)
Vesper Boat Club
William Carr
Harry DeBaecke
John Exley
John Geiger
Edwin Hedley
James Juvenal
Roscoe Lockwood
Edward Marsh
Louis Abell
 Belgium (BEL)
Royal Club Nautique de Gand
Jules De Bisschop
Prosper Bruggeman
Oscar Dessomville
Oscar De Cock
Maurice Hemelsoet
Marcel Van Crombrugge
Frank Odberg
Maurice Verdonck
Alfred Van Landeghem
 Netherlands (NED)
Minerva Amsterdam
François Brandt
Johannes van Dijk
Roelof Klein
Ruurd Leegstra
Walter Middelberg
Hendrik Offerhaus
Walter Thijssen
Henricus Tromp
Hermanus Brockmann

Participating nations

A total of 108 rowers from 8 nations competed at the Paris Games:

Medal table

1 France (FRA)2316
2 Germany (GER)1023
3 Mixed team (ZZX)1001
 United States (USA)1001
5 Netherlands (NED)0112
6 Belgium (BEL)0101
7 Great Britain (GBR)0011
Totals (7 entries)55515

Coxswain mystery

François Brandt (left), Roelof Klein and their coxswain, after the coxed pair final at the 1900 Olympics

In the coxed pair event, the names of the coxswains for six of the seven crews entered are not known. Most of these were young French boys weighing about 25 kg, which the French crews employed to their advantage.[9] The winning Dutch crew decided, after losing their heat, that their own coxswain was too heavy, and they recruited a French boy to steer the boat for the finals. The lad, name unknown, is believed likely to be the youngest Olympic gold medalist ever (previously estimated as between 7 and 10 years of age).[10][11] Some estimate the boy was likely 12 to 14 years old.[9] One researcher has made a case that this unknown cox could have been Giorgi Nikoladze (1888-1931) of Georgia, a future scientist and promulgator of Georgian sport.[12][13]


  1. ^ "Rowing at the 1900 Paris Summer Games". Sports Reference. Archived from the original on 17 April 2020. Retrieved 22 July 2018.
  2. ^ Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill; et al. "Rowing at the 1900 Paris Summer Games: Men's Coxed Pairs". Olympics at Sports Reference LLC. Archived from the original on 18 April 2020. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  3. ^ "Why do we race 2000m? The history behind the distance". International Rowing Federation. 1 May 2017. Retrieved 4 August 2018.
  4. ^ a b Due to wrangling about who would be allowed to compete in the coxed four final, two finals were held for that competition. Both finals are considered Olympic championships by the International Olympic Committee.
  5. ^ Despite information from some sources (DutchNews), the IOC continues to attribute this medal to Mixed Team, as it must be shown in the IOC database (IOC-DB-1, IOC-DB-2).
  6. ^ Brockmann was the coxswain for the Dutch team in the semifinal, but not in the final, in which an unknown French boy participated as coxswain. Brockmann is considered a gold medalist by the IOC and is listed in that organization's medal database.
  7. ^ The unknown cox actually was maybe 12 years old kid Giorgi Nikoladze of Georgia, then Russian Empire - future famous scientist and founder of Shevardeni Society as established in recent RESEARCH by Dr Paata Natsvlishvili, Georgia NOC foundation member but this research is not convincing (Histoire secrète du sport, François Thomazeau, La Découverte, 2019.).
  8. ^ The German team changed the coxswain after the semi-final. Gustav Moths participated only in the semi-final and Max Ammermann participated in the final. However, the IOC medal database credits the bronze medal only to Gustav Moths.
  9. ^ a b Bijkerk, Tony (Spring 1997). "ROWING AT THE GAMES OF THE 2ND OLYMPIAD, PARIS 1900". Journal of Olympic History. 5 (1). I want to state that in my humble opinion this young boy might still be one of the youngest gold-medal winners in the Olympic Games ever, but he is certainly not younger than 12 to 14 years old, as can be deducted from the enclosed photograph. ...nothing can be found about the ages from the coxes from the French rowing teams in Paris 1900. I am quite certain that when the age from these boys could be found, they must have been even younger than the one in the Dutch boat; who had already been discarded because of his weight!
  10. ^ "This Boy Might Be the Youngest Ever Olympian—No One Knows Who He Is". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved August 10, 2019.
  11. ^ Kamper, Erich; Mallon, Bill (1992). The Golden Book of the Olympic Games. Milan: Vallardi & Associati. ISBN 978-88-85202-35-1.
  12. ^ Natsvlishvili, Paata (2016). "Was the "Unknown French Boy" in 1900 actually from Georgia?" (PDF). Journal of Olympic History. 24 (3).
  13. ^ Natsvlishvili, Paata (2016). "GIORGI NIKOLADZE: "UNKNOWN FRENCH BOY"". Olympic World Library. Tbilisi, Georgia: Georgian Sports Journalists Association.

Further reading