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by Wondery
American History Tellers

The Fight for the First U.S. Olympics | Passing the Torch


The 1904 St. Louis Olympics were marred by controversy and poorly organized events like the marathon. But at least they took place as scheduled. In 1916, after the outbreak of World War I, they were canceled entirely. A century later, in 2020, the Olympics faced another kind of test: a global pandemic that forced the first postponement of the Games in their history.

In this episode, Lindsay discusses troubled Olympics past and present with Dr. Susan Brownell, a former nationally ranked track-and-field athlete turned scholar and Olympic historian. They’ll look at how war, disease, boycotts and political turmoil have repeatedly threatened the Games throughout their history, and how the Olympics have survived such challenges to unite the world in its love of sport.

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Episode 4

by Wondery