Brown Olympians
The Ivy League's Complete History of the Olympic Games

1936 GermischPartenkirchen Winter Games
756 Athletes, 28 Countries, 17 Events

Berlin was the site of the 1936 Summer Games and Germany proceeded to exercise their right to hold the Winter Games as well. The Games were to be played in the towns of Garmisch and Partenkirchen, both communities were in close proximity of one another. These sites were announced in 1931, when the IOC awarded Berlin the Summer Games. Two years later, Adolf Hitler rose to power, leading many countries to question the venue of the Winter Games that would take place first. However, the IOC received assurances from Hitler, and the Games went on with recordbreaking attendance of 28 nations and 646 athletes.

Alpine skiing was an Olympic event for the first time in 1936, to the delight of Dartmouth skiers Warren H. Chivers (1938), Richard H. Durrance (1939), Edgar H. Hunter, Jr. (1938), and A. Lincoln Washburn (1935) who were among the 12 Ivy League athletes, all competing for the United States, at the Games.

Chivers, Durrance, and Washburn were teammates on the Dartmouth Outing Club (where alpine skiing was long since introduced), teammates on the Olympic team, and fraternity brothers as well (all were part of Phi Gamma Delta). Chivers was part of the 40kilometer relay team at GarmischPartenkirchen. Washburn skied in the slalom and 2mile alpine events, he placed 35th in the latter, placing him fourth among American finishers. Durrance placed 8th in the slalom race and 11th in the alpine. Their teammate, Hunter, hit a rock in practice just days before the Games and did not compete. Though none of the four Dartmouth skiers took home a medal, they were part of the pioneering of alpine skiing. Durrance, who spent part of his childhood in Garmisch, would stay involved with the sport for years to come as the best collegiate racer, and later as a fixture in the Aspen skiing community.

Five Leaguers were part of the U.S. Men's Ice Hockey team at the 1936 Games, hoping to avenge the championship loss to Canada at the 1932 Games. Great Britain took care of Canada instead, surprising many on their way to the gold medal. However, the Great Britain team included ten players that lived in Canada. The US team still managed to come in third, with the leadership of: Frank J. Spain (Dartmouth, 1934), John B. Garrison, (Harvard 1931), Frank K. Stubbs (Harvard, 1936), Frederick A. Kammer (Princeton, 1934), and Malcolm E. McAlpin (Princeton, 1932).

The Games also featured three Crimson figure skaters: George E.D. Hill (1933), James L. Madden (1933), and Maribel Y. Vinson (1933). This would be the last Games for all three; Madden and Vinson had prior Olympic experience, Vinson won the bronze medal in the ladies' singles competition in 1932. Tragically, Vinson (later Maribel Owen) would die in a plane crash 25 years later with the 1961 U.S. Figure Skating team heading to the world championships. Also on the plane were her two daughters, both members of the team.

Name School Sport
Warren H. Chivers Dartmouth College Men's Nordic Skiing
Richard H. Durrance Dartmouth College Men's Nordic Skiing
Edgar H. Hunter, Jr. Dartmouth College Men's Alpine Skiing
Frank J. Spain Dartmouth College Men's Ice Hockey
A. Lincoln Washburn Dartmouth College Men's Alpine Skiing
John B. Garrison Harvard University Men's Ice Hockey
George E.D. Hill Harvard University Men's Figure Skating
James L. Madden Harvard University Men's Figure Skating
Frank K. Stubbs Harvard University Men's Ice Hockey
Maribel Y. Vinson Harvard University Women's Figure Skating
Frederick A. Kammer Princeton University Men's Ice Hockey
Malcolm E. McAlpin Princeton University Men's Ice Hockey
Gilbert Colgate Yale University Men's Bobsled

 

 

© 2004 Council of Ivy Group Presidents. All rights reserved. Official Olympic Posters appear with permission and are the property of the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The image of the Acropolis was courtesy of the collection of Kevin T. Glowacki and Nancy L. Klein.

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