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Forrest Smithson

Full name: Forrest Custer Smithson
Gender: Male
Height: 6-0 (183 cm)
Weight: 179 lbs (81 kg)
Born: September 26, 1884 in Portland, Oregon, United States
Died: November 24, 1962 in Contra Costa County, California, United States
Affiliations: Multnomah AC, Portland (USA)
Country: USA United States
Sport: Athletics

Medals: 1 Gold (1 Total)


Forrest Smithson attended both Notre Dame and Oregon State (then Oregon Agricultural College), but did not graduate from either school. He later became a Baptist minister and supposedly won the 1908 Olympic high hurdles carrying a Bible in his hand as a protest against Sunday competition. However, this claim, based on a posed picture in the Official Report of the Olympics, is false. The final of the race was held on a Saturday, and Sunday racing was uncommon in Britain at the time. Smithson won the AAU title in 1907 and 1909 and his winning time of 15.0 at the 1908 Olympic was recognized as the first official IAAF record.

Personal Bests: 100 – 11.2 (1968); 110H – 15.0 (1908).


Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1908 Summer 23 London Athletics Men's 110 metres Hurdles United States USA 1 Gold WR

Men's 110 metres Hurdles

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank T
1908 Summer 23 London Athletics United States Final 1 WR 15.0
1908 Summer 23 London Athletics United States Semi-Finals Heat Two 1 QU/=OR 15.4
1908 Summer 23 London Athletics United States Round One Heat Ten 1 QU 15.8
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