James Francis “Jim” Thorpe, dubbed the Greatest Athlete in the world, was born May 22, 1887, in Indian Territory (later to become Oklahoma state in 1907) and grew up in the Sac and Fox Nation. He was considered one of the most versatile athletes of modern sports.
Thorpe won Olympic gold medals for the 1912 Olympic pentathlon and decathlon. He also played professional football, baseball, and basketball. In 1920, he was nominated the first president of the American Professional Football Association, which would become the National Football League in 1922.
In a poll of sports fans conducted by ABC Sports, Thorpe was voted the Greatest Athlete of the Twentieth Century out of a group of athletes which included Muhammed Ali, Babe Ruth, Jesse Owens, and others.
Jim Thorpe was sixty-five when he died on March 28, 1953.
Interview with Bill Thorpe about Jim Thorpe
Müllerhaus Legacy Website Team
Date Created: August 3, 2015
Date Published: August 21, 2015
Notes: Recorded by John Erling in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Digital Audio Sound Recording, Non-Music.
Tags: 1912 Olympics, Kirk Douglas, King Gustav, The Greatest Athlete, Pop Warner, Jackie Robinson, 1912 Medals, Native American, Athlete, American Professional Football Association, National Football League, Indian Territory