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11th Olympic Games in Berlin Open

On this day, in 1936 the 11th Olympic Games in Berlin Open


  August 1, 1936

   Sport: Olympics


The 11th Summer Olympic Games opened at the Olympiastadion in Berlin on Aug. 1, 1936. The opening ceremony began with a flyover by the German airship Hindenburg, which would crash in New Jersey the following year. Adolf Hitler presided over the Parade of Nations, which is part of the opening ceremonies and included 49 countries. Some athletes gave Hitler the Nazi salute as they passed in front of him, and most countries — except the United States, United Kingdom, Switzerland and Philippines — lowered their respective flags as a show of respect to the German leader. 

Afghanistan, Bermuda, Bolivia, Costa Rica and Liechtenstein made their Olympic debuts, while the games consisted of 129 events in 19 sports — with basketball and handball being included for the first time. Host nation Germany won the most medals (89), followed by the United States (56) and Italy (22). 

American Jesse Owens led all competitors by winning four gold medals in track and field events. 

Sources: Edmondson, Jacqueline (2007). Jesse Owens: A Biography. USA: Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 29.
Birchall, Frederick T. (1 August 1939). "100,000 Hail Hitler; U.S. Athletes Avoid Nazi Salute to Him". The New York Times.

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