1920 Olymipc Games – Antwerp, Belgium

File:1920 olympics poster.jpg

1920 saw a return of the Games after World War I. The games were selected in 1916 to be held in Berlin, Germany, but with the Germans being the aggressors, the games did not return to them. Budapest, Hungary was chosen initially as the host site, but it was settled on Antwerp since Austria-Hungary were allies of the Germans.

After the successful 1912 Games, these games returned to a drawn out schedule. The Games opened in April and lasted up through September. There were 2,626 athletes participating in this Olympiad, with the United States capturing the most medals with 41g, 27s, 27b.

This Olympiad saw several records and the implementation of the Olympic Oath, the flying of the Olympic flag, and the release of doves as a symbol of peace. In one of the more unique moments the finals of one of the sailing events was moved to the Netherlands, as the only competitors in the event were Dutch.

Finland’s Paavo Nurmi won the 10,000 and 8,000 cross country events, adding another silver and a team gold in cross country to help derail the United States dominance of athletic events.

These Games also featured a week of winter sports with figure skating last contested at the 1908 Games and ice hockey making its debut.

Twenty-nine nations participated, one more than the 1912 Games. During the Games, the Olympic Organizing Committee went bankrupt, and no official report of the Games was created. The documentation was undertaken by the Belgian Olympic Committee headquartered in Brussels.

After this Olympiad the Games would be divided into a Summer and Winter Games, both contested in the same year, and traditionally with the same host country. The Games would return to Paris in 1924 for the Summer Games, and Chamonix would be the host site of the Winter Games.

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