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The first gold medalist in an individual event was DeHart Hubbard who established an Olympic record in the long jump of 24'5". Edward Gourdin was a silver medalist 23'11" and this was perhaps the start of the dominance for the Black United States athlete in the long jump. In no other event has the Black athlete contributed more than he has in this event winning 10 of the last twelve Olympics. Blacks contributed a total of 18 medals; 10 gold, five silver and three bronze. The writer being one of the latter medalists. Jesse Owens regarded as the greatest track and field Olympian in 1936 established an Olympic record of 26'5 1/2" which lasted for twenty-four years. At that time, another Black broke his record, Ralph Boston set one of 26' 7 1/2". This record lasted until Bob Beamon broke his record with a phenominal leap of 29' 2 1/2" which we might never see eclipsed in our lifetime. The event which is runner-up to Black contribution is the 110 meter hurdle event. Since Fritz Pollard, Jr. placed third in the 1936 Olympics, Blacks have won six of the past eight Olympics. Harrison Dillard initiated this trend by winning the first in 1952 and Lee Calhoun won two back to back, 1956-1960, Olympic record time of 13.2. One of the most heralded event in the Olympics is the 100 meter dash to determine the world's fastest human. After Eddie Tolan contributed the first gold medal in 1932 and Ralph Metcalfe won the silver, Jesse Owens won this distinction in 1933 with Ralph Metcalfe again a silver medalist. The Black American has won this event five times and currently Jim Hines holds the Olympic and World record of 9.9 in the 1968 Olympics. Others who have won this coveted award are Harrison Dillard, 1948, Bob Hayes, 1964. The first Black to win a gold in 200 meters was Eddie Tolan in 1932. He was followed in 1936 by Jesse Owens and in 1952 Andy Stanfield, Henry Carr in 1964 and Tommy Smith in 1968 who holds the existing world record of 19.89. After Archie Williams started the gold trend in the 400 meters with an Olympic record, this was not duplicated until Charlie Jenkins won in 1956 and then followed by Otis Davis in 1960. Lee Evans in 1968 and current holder of world and Olympic record of 43.8 and the last to accomplish this was in 1972 when Vince Matthews won. There have only been three Black gold medalists in the 800 meters, John Woodruff in 1936 and Mal Whitfield won back to back championships in 1948, 1952 in Olympic record time. Black Americans have always been weak in middle distances but we can go back to the 1924 Olympics when Earl Johnson won a bronze medal in the 10,000 meter cross country. The high jump world record has been held by several Blacks but only two have managed to win a gold medal, Cornelius Johnson in 1936 and Charles Dumas in 1956. WOMEN'S TRACK & FIELD The first Black woman to win an Olympic medal was Alice Coachman. She won a gold medal in the high jump in the 1948 Olympics in London. The other female medalist (bronze), Audry Patterson, 200 meter dash, Mildred McDaniel duplicated a gold medal in the high jump in the 1956 Olympics in Melbourne and Willye White won a silver medal in the long jump. This was her initial Olympics and she made Olympic teams four more times for somewhat of a record. The Black females were superb in the 4 x 100 relay winning this event in 1952, 1960, 1964, 1968. The star or belle of the 1960 Olympics was Wilma Rudolph. She won the 100 meters, 200 meters and anchored the 4 x 100 relay. Following Wilma to dominate the sprints was Wyomia Tyus. She won the 100 meters in 1964 and 1968. A surprise winner in the 1968 Olympics was Medeline Manning when she established a new record in the 800 meters. The Black females represented 48% of the 1976 Olympic track team but only managed two silver medals in the 4 x 400 relay and Kathy McMillan in the long jump. WORLD RECORDS The United States men track and field athletes at this time hold ten of the 21 existing world records of which eight were made by Black athletes. The 1936 Olympics in Berlin, Germany were magnificently staged. The Germans emerged with the highest point total. Adolf Hitler, Aryan theories of racial superiority were shattered by the U.S. Black athletes, called the black auxiliaries. Black Cornelius Johnson and Dave Albritton placed first and second in the high jump, Johnny Woodruff won the 800 meters and Archie Williams and James LuValle placed one and three in the 400 meters; Jesse Owens, Ralph Metcalfe and Mack Robinson dominated in the sprints and relays. Jesse Owens' accomplishment were a fantastic personal triumph. He won four gold medals—100 and 200 meter sprints, the long jump and 4 x 100 relay. In each of these events he broke or helped to break the Olympic records. MEN'S TRACK & FIELD [[7 column table]] [[event]] | BLK Gold | US Total | BLK Silver | US Total | BLK Bronze | US Total 100 Meters | 5 | 12 (41.6%) | 4 | 12 | 1-2 | 10 (38.4%) 200 Meters | 5 | 12 (41.6%) | 7 | 14 | 4-7 | 16 (48.7%) 400 Meters | 5 | 12 (41.6%) | 3 | 8 | 5-7 | 13 (48.1%) 800 Meters | 3 | | | | | 3 400 Mt/Hurd. | 1 | | | | | 2 | 3 110 MT/Hurd. | 6 | 15 | (40%) | 2 | 13 | 4 | 12 | High jump | 2 | | 3 | | 2 | 7 Triple jump | | | 1 | | | Long jump | 10 | 15 (66%) | 5 | 11 | 3 | 18 (53%) Decatholon | 2 | | | | 4 4 x 100 | 24 | 44 (54.5%)| | | | 4 4 x 400 | 15 | 38 (39.1%)| 2 | | | 17 [[tally line]] | 78 | | 28 | | 21 | 126 WOMEN [[4 column table]] Gold | Silver | Bronze | Total 100 Meters | 3 | 2 | | 5 200 Meters | 3 | | | 5 800 Meters | 1 | | | 1 High jump | 2 | | | 2 Long jump | | 2 | | 2 4 x 100 | 15 | | 4 | 19 [[tally line]] | 24 | 8 | 4 | 36 14
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