Uncooperative weather for the first games in 1924 — Salt Lake City Olympic Games Commemorative Silver Dollar Coin

Today, the Salt Lake City Olympic Games Commemorative Silver Dollar Coin remembers the first winter games held in Chamonix, France in 1924.

The 1924 Winter Olympics were a winter multi-sport event and held in association with the 1924 Summer Olympics.

The winter competitions were held at the foot of Mont Blanc in Chamonix, and Haute-Savoie, France between January 25 and February 5, 1924.

The Games, organized by the French Olympic Committee, were designated by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as the I Olympic Winter Games.

Some insights into the games from the Pittsburgh Press:


Paris, Jan. 24.

Curtain Rises on Olympic First Act; Winter Sports On

With the curtain rising on the first act— winter sports at Chamonix —tomorrow, the Olympic Games committee is slowly but surely completing the stage setting for the big Olympic show of 1924.

Chamonix is ready for the international battles in speed skating, ice hockey, bobsleigh racing, ski-jumping, curling and other winter athletic tests. Sixteen nations will be represented by their champions and stars.

The competing countries will be the United States, Great Britain, France, Canada, Jugo-Slavia, Italy, Czechoslovakia, Belgium, Finland, Austria, Latvia, Norway, Switzerland, Esthonia, Sweden and Hungary.

The total number of nations entering the games in Paris is nearly 40, with late entries still coming in from far corners of the globe. The Olympic committee is laboring every day on some phase of the vast project.

The only important matter that Is causing any worry to officials is the delay in the construction of the “Olympic Village,” at Colombes, where the visiting athletes will be housed.

Work was originally set for December 1st, but was postponed until January 1st, making haste necessary if the village is to be ready when the athletic Invaders start landing in force In June. America, England, Sweden and Italy wilt house their own teams away from the village.

Chamonix, France, Jan. 25.

Olympic Opening Dubious

With the skating rink and snowslides almost wrecked by thaws, opening of the Olympic games here tomorrow seems dubious.

The skating rink is soft and sloppy and slides for the bobsled and ski contests have melted down almost to mud.

Athletes of the nations entered in the winter sports have had practically no preparatory work and are willing to accept a postponement for better weather.

Official of the French Olympic committee have had carloads of snow hauled down from the mountains to cover up the bare spots in the slide, and while it has been made fairly good for practice, it hardly can be used for real competition.

In trials yesterday the Norwegian ski jumpers made some jumps of more than 120 feet after taking off a jumping pitch with only a run of 100 feet.

Refusal of the French committee to permit more than two rubbers or trainers in a dressing room has caused the American team to threaten its withdrawal.

American officials content there are no provisions in the International or Olympic rules to limit the number of trainers or rubbers and claim the ruling of the committee was open discrimination against the Americans.

Chamonix, France, Jan. 26.

Yankees Score First Victory in 1924 Olympic Games

Charley Jewtraw of Lake Placid, NY, scored the first American victory in the 1924 Olympiad in winning the 500-meter skating championship.

Jewtraw’s victory was on a time basis, the upper New York entry skating the distance in 44 seconds.

Joe Moore of New York won the first heat in 45.3 seconds and Harry Kaskey of Chicago the sixth heat in 47 seconds.

Jewtraw turned in the winning time for the race in beating Gorman of Canada in the fifteenth and next to last heat.

The American entered the race fully aware that he had to do or die a figurative death in the attempt, because Moore, Kaskey and Steinmetz, the remaining American entries had made slower time than Olsen of Norway.

The latter disposed of Steinmetz in the twelfth heat in 44.1 seconds and seemed destined to capture individual honors in the race until Jewtraw flashed across the finish just one-tenth of a second faster than the Norwegian had covered the distance.

The racing was conducted under the continental system of interchanging lanes and two-man heats, a system unfamiliar to the Americans.

When the Americans team appeared, in white sweaters and tights, with the neat United States emblem shining on their breasts, a great cheer went up. It had been feared that the Americans would not compete.

The controversy that arose when the committee announced that each team could have only two rubbers and trainers in the dressing rooms was settled when William Taylor, manager of the American team, said, “We’ll go out and win without a trainer if necessary.”

The Americans had contended they should be permitted to use as many trainers as they saw fit as there is no provision to the contrary in the rules.

Before going to the starting line for the first heat, the American team took a couple of fast turns around the course and the speed of young Moore astounded some of the visitors.

He was given a great cheer when he glided up to the starting line and an ovation went up when he finished first with a terrific burst of speed.

In the final rating of the contestants on the time basis, Olson was placed second to Jewtraw while Thunberg of Finland and Lanson of Norway were tied for third place.  Moore and Kaskey were placed eighth and fourteenth respectively.

Chamonix, France, Jan. 28.

Yankees Defeat Belgium

Sweden won the first of the Olympic Hockey matches here today defeating Switzerland 9-0.

There is little enthusiasm here about any of the matches excepting those in which the American and Canadian teams play, as it is considered almost certain that they will get through to the finals.

The American team scored an easy victory over Belgium, the Yankees winning by a score of 19-0.

At no time during the match were the Americans pressed. They passed brilliantly and shot goals with great accuracy, impressing the spectators with their ability.

Herbert Drury of Pittsburgh was the bright star of the American victory.


In medal count, Norway achieved 17 medals with Finland second at 11. The remaining countries to medal won less than five.

The United States had one gold, two silver and one bronze for a total of four.

The total medal count for all countries and all sports was 49 in dramatic contrast to the 2014 games with 295 medals awarded.

The Salt Lake City Olympic Games Commemorative Silver Dollar Coin shows with an image of the Chamonix Valley, circa 1890.

Salt Lake City Olympic Games Commemorative Silver Dollar Coin