Native American Jim Thorpe Reinstated as Winner of 1912 Olympic Golds


Native American athlete Jim Thorpe was reinstated as the winner of the 1912 Olympic pentathlon and decathlon in Stockholm, after he was stripped of his gold medals for violating amateur sports rules at the time for more than a century.


The International Olympic Committee declared Thorpe the winner of the events, which coincided with the 110th anniversary of his decathlon win. King Gustav V of Sweden proclaimed him as "the greatest athlete in the world."


Thorpe, a Native American, had his medal removed after he had been paid to play minor league baseball over two summers, an infringement of the Olympic amateurism rules. He was stripped of his gold medals in what was described as the first major international sports scandal.


"We welcome the fact that, thanks to the great engagement of Bright Path Strong, a solution could be found," IOC President Thomas Bach said. "This is a most exceptional and unique situation, which has been addressed by an extraordinary gesture of fair play from the National Olympic Committees concerned."


Thorpe’s Native American name, Wa-Tho-Huk, means "Bright Path." He was the first Native American to win an Olympic gold medal for the United States.

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