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Athletics at the 1920 Antwerpen Summer Games:

Men's High Jump

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Host City: Antwerpen, Belgium
Venue(s): Olympic Stadium, Antwerpen
Date Started: August 15, 1920
Date Finished: August 17, 1920

Gold: USA Dick Landon
Silver: USA Harold Muller
Bronze: SWE Bo Ekelund

Summary

Dick Landon, Harold Muller and Bo Ekelund were the only jumpers to survive 1.90 metres, but only Muller cleared it on his first attempt. Landon was the only jumper to clear the next height, 1.94 metres (6-4 3/8). He made it on his second attempt, breaking the Olympic record of 1.93 (6-4) that had been set by Alma Richards in winning the gold medal at Stockholm in 1912. Landon had met a U.S. diver on the boat to Antwerp, Alice Lord, and they fell in love and later married. Muller was well known as one of the top collegiate football players in the United States. At the 1920 AAU Championships, which doubled as the Olympic Trials, the order of finish had been 1) John Murphy (who finished 5th in Antwerp), 2) Landon, 3) Muller.

There is some dispute about the final height for Landon with his winning jump. It appears that after Landon, Muller, Ekelund cleared 1.90, they raised the bar to 1.94, which would break the Olympic record by 1 centimetre. Only Landon cleared the bar at that height. It seems it was then re-measured, and it appears that the Imperial measure was 6-4¼, which is almost exactly 1.9368, a mark that was seen in 1920 in the Belgian sporting paper, Vélo-Sport, and which is obviously only an extrapolation from 6-4¼ (it could not have been measured to the 1/10th of a millimetre).

It is not known if the height was also re-measured metrically, but both 1.935 and 1.936 are seen in 1920 reports, as follows: 1920 Official Report – 1.935; 1920 United States Olympic Committee Report – 1.935 (6-4 1/5); and 1920 Finnish Report (Seitsemannet Olympialaisat Kisat) – 1.936. It would seem that 1.936 is more correct, rounding down from 1.9368. The 1.935 mark may have been chosen as accurate to the nearest ½-centimetre, but it cannot be certain whether the correct height should be 1.935 or 1.936.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal H
1 Dick Landon 21 United States USA Gold 1.936 OR
2 Harold Muller 18 United States USA Silver 1.900
3 Bo Ekelund 25 Sweden SWE Bronze 1.900
4 Walter Whalen 22 United States USA 1.850
5 John Murphy 25 United States USA 1.850
6 Howard Baker 28 Great Britain GBR 1.850
7T Pierre Lewden 19 France FRA 1.800
7T Einar Thulin 24 Sweden SWE 1.800
9T René Labat 28 France FRA 1.750
9T Timothy Carroll 31 Great Britain GBR 1.750
9T Hans Jagenburg 25 Sweden SWE 1.750
9T Thorvig Svahn 26 Sweden SWE 1.750
AC QR Georges Henrion 25 Belgium BEL
AC QR Jean Mahy Belgium BEL
AC QR Jean Hénault 20 Belgium BEL
AC QR Bill Kennedy Canada CAN
AC QR Pierre Guilloux 18 France FRA
AC QR Eric Dunbar 22 Great Britain GBR
AC QR William Hunter 27 Great Britain GBR
AC QR James Andromedas Greece GRE
AC QR Henri Pleger 21 Luxembourg LUX
AC QR František Stejskal 24 Czechoslovakia TCH