Friday, August 22, 2008

Berlin 1936

Wherein from this book: The Story of the Olympic Games, 776B.C. to 1960 A.D.

Basketball was on the program for the second time in Olympic history and the United States team ran away with the championship, which was to be expected, even under the strange rules enforced by foreign officials on the outdoor court at Berlin. Basketball was invented or devised in the United States and when themEuropeans adopted it they couldn't twist the fundamental principles so out of shape that the United States representatives could be beaten at their own game. The soccer competition provided the usual supply of brawls and upheld its unenviable record as the most quarrelsome sport on the Olympic chart.

I wouldn't know about this "unenviable record" because in this history of the Olympics this is the first time soccer has been mentioned.
Later in the Berlin soccer campaign there was an argument over a game won by Peru over Austri and the game was ordered re-played. This exasperated the Peruvians, who promptly withdrew their whole team from further participation in the Olympic Games, and in far-off Lima the indignant citizens of Peru gathered up stones and bombarded the German Consulate although, as it happened, the Germans had nothing to do with the incident at Berlin in any capacity. [...]

The United States expedition was not entirely a peace party on its way to the Berlin opening ceremonies. Mrs. Eleanor Holm Jarrett, backstroke winner in the women's division of the swimming competition at Los Angeles in 1932, was removed from the team by Avery Brundage, head of the American Olympic Committee, on the charge that she had broken training rules on shipboard -- champagne was mentioned in the indictment -- and there was a to-do about it at home and abroad.

More on Eleanor Holm Jarrett


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