Tell Berna

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameTell Schirnding•Berna
Used nameTell•Berna
Born24 July 1891 in Pelham Manor, New York (USA)
Died5 April 1975 in Nantucket, Massachusetts (USA)
Measurements188 cm / 70 kg
AffiliationsCornell Big Red, Ithaca (USA)
NOC United States
Medals OG
Gold 1
Silver 0
Bronze 0
Total 1


While at Cornell, Tell Berna won the IC4A two miles title in 1910 and 1911 and the following year set a U.S. record of 9:17.8, which was to remain unbeaten for 20 years. After finishing a creditable fifth in the 5,000 m at the Stockholm Olympics, Berna led the U.S. team to victory in the 3,000 m team race by finishing in a deadheat for first place with Thorid OhIsson of Sweden. After graduation, Tell Berna worked for a number of firms in the machine tool business and in 1937 he became general manager of the National Machine Tools Business Association. In that capacity he worked closely with the War Production Board during World War II to maximize production of munitions.

Personal Bests: 3000 – unknown; 5000 – 15:08.4 (1912).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1912 Summer Olympics Athletics USA Tell Berna
5,000 metres, Men (Olympic) 5
3,000 metres, Team, Men (Olympic) United States 1 Gold
Cross-Country, Individual, Men (Olympic) DNF
Cross-Country, Team, Men (Olympic) United States DNF