1928 Summer Olympics

Games of the IX Olympiad

Logo of the 1928 Summer Olympics
Host city Amsterdam, Netherlands
Nations participating 46
Athletes participating 2,883 (2,606 men, 277 women)
Events 109 in 14 sports
Opening ceremony July 28
Closing ceremony August 12
Officially opened by Prince Hendrik
Athlete's Oath Harry Dénis
Olympic Torch None
Stadium Olympisch Stadion
<  Paris 1924 Los Angeles 1932  >
<  St Moritz 1928 Lake Placid 1932  >
The Olympisch Stadion in 1928
Prince Hendrik watching the football-match Netherlands–Uruguay (0–2)

The 1928 Summer Olympics (Dutch: Olympische Zomerspelen 1928), officially known as the Games of the IX Olympiad, was an international multi-sport event which was celebrated in 1928 in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Amsterdam had bid for the 1920 and 1924 Olympic Games, but had to give way to wartorn Antwerp, Belgium, and Pierre de Coubertin's Paris, respectively. The only other candidate city for the 1928 Games was Los Angeles, which would host the Olympics four years later.

The United States Olympic Committee measured the costs and revenue of the 1928 Games in preparation for the 1932 Summer Olympics. The committee reported a total cost of US$1.183 million with receipts of US$1.165 million for a loss of US$18,000—much less than that of the previous Games.[1]


The 1928 Games invented the blue parking sign with a white P.

Host city selection

Frederik van Tuyll van Serooskerken first proposed Amsterdam as host city for the Summer Olympic Games in 1912, even before the Netherlands Olympic Committee was established. In 1916 the Olympic Games were cancelled due to World War I. In 1919 the Netherlands Olympic Committee abandoned the proposal of Amsterdam in favour of their support of the nomination of Antwerp as host city for the 1920 Summer Olympics. In 1921 Paris was selected for the 1924 Summer Olympics on the condition that the 1928 Summer Olympics would be organized in Amsterdam. This decision, supported by the Netherlands Olympic Committee, was announced by the International Olympic Committee on 2 June 1921. The decision was disputed by the Americans, but their request to allocate the 1928 Summer Olympics to Los Angeles was without success in 1922 and again in 1923.[4] Los Angeles was eventually selected as host city for the 1932 Summer Olympics.[5]


Eight Dutch stamps from 1928, showing different sports of the 1928 Summer Olympics

During the Summer Olympics, there were 14 sports, 20 disciplines and 109 events in the tournament. In parentheses is the number of events per discipline.[5]

Women's athletics and team gymnastics debuted at these Olympics,[6] in spite of criticism. Halina Konopacka of Poland became the first female Olympic track and field champion. Reports that the 800 meter run ended with several of the competitors being completely exhausted were widely (and erroneously) circulated. As a result, the IOC decided that women were too frail for long distance running, and women's Olympic running events were limited to 200 meters until the 1960s.[7]

Tennis disappeared from the program, only to reappear in 1968 as a demonstration sport.

Demonstration sports

These Games also included art competitions, which the IOC no longer considers as official medal events.


Fourteen sports venues were used for the 1928 Summer Olympics. The Swim Stadium was demolished in 1929 with it being a temporary venue.[8] Het Kasteel was renovated in 1998-9. Monnikenhuize was demolished in 1950. The Schermzaal was demolished. Olympic Stadium was renovated in 2007 and is still in use. Old Stadium has since been demolished and replaced by housing in the Amsterdam area.

Venue Sports Capacity Ref.
Amersfoort Modern pentathlon (riding) Not listed. [9]
Amsterdam Cycling (road) Not listed. [10]
Buiten Y Sailing 2,263 [11]
Hilversum Equestrian (non-jumping), Modern pentathlon (running) 4,763 [12]
Krachtsportgebouw Boxing, Weightlifting, Wrestling 4,634 [13]
Monnikenhuize (Arnhem) Football 7,500 [14]
Old Stadion Field hockey, Football 29,787 [15]
Olympic Sports Park Swim Stadium Diving, Modern pentathlon (swimming), Swimming, Water polo 6,000 [8]
Olympic Stadium Athletics, Cycling (track), Equestrian (jumping), Football, Gymnastics, Korfball 33,025 [16]
Schermzaal Fencing, Modern pentathlon (fencing) 559 [17]
Sloterringvaart, Sloten Rowing 2,230 [18]
Sparta Stadion Het Kasteel (Rotterdam) Football 11,026 [19][20]
Zeeburg Shooting Grounds Modern pentathlon (shooting) 10,455 [9]
Zuiderzee Sailing 2,263 [11]

Participating nations

Number of athletes

A total of 46 nations were represented at the Amsterdam Games. Malta, Panama, and Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) competed at the Olympic Games for the first time. Germany returned after having been banned in 1920 and 1924.[21]

Medal count

These are the top ten nations that won medals at the 1928 Games.

 Rank  Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
1 United States 22181656
2 Germany 1071431
3 Finland 88925
4 Sweden 761225
5 Italy 75719
6 Switzerland 74415
7 France 610521
8 Netherlands (host nation) 69419
9 Hungary 4509
10 Canada 44715


The official poster.

The official poster for the Games was designed by Jos Rovers, and 10,000 copies were made. The poster displays a running man in a white shirt, with in the background the Olympic stadium and the Olympic flag (shown above). The IOC never succeeded in getting the copyright of the image. Therefore, out of practical considerations, the IOC has used a different poster, with the German text Olympische Spiele, and an athlete partly covered in the Dutch national flag, holding a peace leaf in his hand. This poster was made for a German book about the Amsterdam Olympics.[22]

Canon of Amsterdam

See also

Surviving competitors

As of May 2016, there is at least one competitor of the 1928 Summer Olympics still living; Clara Marangoni, an Italian gymnast who competed in the games and won a silver medal despite still being only 12 years old. She is now 100 years old.[23]


  1. Zarnowski, C. Frank (Summer 1992). "A Look at Olympic Costs" (PDF). Citius, Altius, Fortius. 1 (1): 16–32. Retrieved 2007-03-24.
  2. "Amsterdam 1928". Olympic.org. Retrieved 2012-07-09.
  3. Chicago Tribune Co. "America Bids for Games: Olympics of 1928 May be Held in This Country", New York Times. 6 April 1923. Page 15.
  4. 1 2 G. van Rossem (ed.) (1928). The Ninth Olympiad Amsterdam 1928 Official Report (PDF). Amsterdam: J. H. de Bussy. pp. 973–985. Archived (PDF) from the original on 8 April 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-25.
  5. "Timeline of Women in Sports". Faculty.elmira.edu. Retrieved 2014-02-12.
  6. "The Forgotten History of Female Athletes Who Organized Their Own Olympics | Bitch Media". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  7. 1 2 1928 Summer Olympics official report. pp. 193, 203, 205-9, 277.
  8. 1 2 1928 Summer Olympics official report. p. 277.
  9. 1928 Summer Olympics official report. p. 264.
  10. 1 2 1928 Summer Olympics official report, featuring map of the Buiten IJ. pp. 271-2, 274.
  11. 1928 Summer Olympics official report. pp. 167, 271-8.
  12. 1928 Summer Olympic official report. pp. 200-1, 205.
  13. FIFA.com 1928 Summer Olympic CHI-MEX results.
  14. 1928 Summer Olympics official report. pp. 173-80.
  15. 1928 Summer Olympics official report. pp. 173-205.
  16. 1928 Summer Olympics official report. pp. 170, 202, 205.
  17. 1928 Summer Olympics official report. pp. 172, 267-72.
  18. FIFA.com 1928 Summer Olympics NED-BEL results from 5 June.
  19. FIFA.com 1928 Summer Olympics NED-CHI results from 8 June.
  20. Guttmann, Allen (1992). The Olympics: A History of the Modern Games. Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press. p. 38. ISBN 0-252-01701-3.
  21. Henk van Gelder: De Spiele in Amsterdam, NRC Handelsblad 30 juli 1996
  22. Clara Marangoni's profile at Sports Reference.com

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to 1928 Summer Olympics.
Preceded by
Summer Olympic Games

IX Olympiad (1928)
Succeeded by
Los Angeles
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