The first American Olympics, held in 1904 in St. Louis, were a vigorous spectacle suited to an energetic and confident nation. The games were wrested away from rival city Chicago and appended to the Louisiana Purchase Exposition World’s Fair. Athletes came from eleven countries and four continents to compete in state-of-the-art facilities, which included a 10,000-seat stadium with gymnasium equipment donated by sporting goods magnate Albert Spalding. St. Louis Olympics, 1904 corrects common misperceptions and presents a fresh view of the games that featured first-time African American Olympians, an eccentric marathon, and documentation by pioneering photojournalist Jessie Tarbox Beals.
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