Aug. 9, 1936 - Owens won his fourth gold medal at the Summer Olympics in Berlin

Jesse Owens was the first American to win four medals in one Olympics. With his four gold medals, Owens was the star of the Berlin Olympics. He equaled the world record (10.3 seconds) in the 100-meter race and broke the world records in the 200-meter race (20.7 seconds) and in the broad jump (26 feet 5 3/8 inches). He was enthusiastically applauded by the largely German crowd and developed a friendship with German long jumper and silver medalist Luz Long.

His relay team set a new world record of 39.8 seconds, which held for 20 years. In their strong showing in track-and-field events at the XIth Olympiad, Owens and other African American athletes struck a propaganda blow against Nazi leader Adolf Hitler, who planned to use the Berlin Games as a showcase of supposed Aryan superiority.

Aug. 4, 1936 - Jesse Owens wins gold in the long jump at Olympics in Berlin

It was the second of four gold medals Jesse Owens won in Berlin, as he firmly dispelled German Fuhrer Adolf Hitler’s notion of the superiority of an Aryan “master race,” for all the world to see.

110,000 spectators watched Owens slam the door on Hitler’s racist theories. In the morning, after fouling on his first two qualifying jumps, Owens finally leaped his way into the final, where he met the young German Lutz Long. Long tied the heavily favored Owens on his second jump, but Owens answered the challenge with a mark of 26’ 5 ½”, the first jump over 26 feet in Olympic history, and an Olympic record that would stand for 24 years. As Owens and Lutz walked arm in arm around the track, the German crowd roared its approval. Hitler promptly left the stadium, missing the medal ceremony.

"Awards become corroded, friends gather no dust." - Jesse Owens

"Awards become corroded, friends gather no dust." - Jesse Owens

Aug. 9, 1936 - Owens wins fourth medal

As part of the United States’ 4×100-meter relay team, Jesse Owens won his fourth gold medal at the Summer Olympics in Berlin. He was the first American to win four medals in one Olympics. His relay team set a new world record of 39.8 seconds, which held for 20 years.

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