Cheer Up Chicago, You Did Have the Olympics Once, Kind Of

Share on Nextdoor

Page 2 of 2

For some reason, though, Chicago, which went on to host another World's Fair and the World Cup and produce Michael Jordan, Oprah and a U.S. President, is still bitter. In an article in the Chicago Tribune last Sunday covering the history of the Olympic Games, reporter Mark Jacob wrote:

Chicago was supposed to host the 1904 Olympics, but St. Louis stole it
away. The Games were a fiasco. Only 14 of 32 participants finished the
marathon, which was held in 90-degree heat with a single water well at
the 12-mile mark. Cuban marathoner Felix Carvajal, who lost his money
in a craps game in New Orleans, hitchhiked to St. Louis and ran the
race in street shoes. He stopped to chat with spectators and to steal
apples from an orchard but still finished fourth. American Fred Lorz
dropped out after nine miles, rode in a car for 11, then rejoined the
race and crossed the finish line first, quickly admitting his hoax. The
prize went to American Thomas Hicks, whose supporters gave him
strychnine (a stimulant in low doses) and brandy -- the first known use
of performance-enhancing drugs in the Olympics.
Bitter much? Can't wait to hear what they have to say about Rio.

Wash. U.'s Francis Field in 1904. - Wikimedia Commons
Wikimedia Commons
Wash. U.'s Francis Field in 1904.

About The Author

Scroll to read more St. Louis Metro News articles (1)


Join Riverfront Times Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.