Charley Brookins

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameCharles Robert "Charley"•Brookins
Used nameCharley•Brookins
Born17 September 1899 in Oskaloosa, Iowa (USA)
Died15 August 1960 in Des Moines, Iowa (USA)
Measurements175 cm / 64 kg
AffiliationsIowa Hawkeyes, Iowa City (USA)
NOC United States


In the early 20s, Charles Brookins was the best in the world at the non-Olympic 220 low hurdles. He was AAU Champion in 1923 and 1925, NCAA Champion in 1922-23, running for the University of Iowa, and in both 1923 and 1924, he set world records for the distance. He later became a sales representative for a Des Moines office equipment company.

It was not well known at the time, but Brookins was African-American, or at least mixed race. His father had been raised a slave but educated himself and later became a reverend. Brookins’ ethnicity was unveiled in the 21st century by his grandson, Matthew Lundeen, although newspapers reports from the 1920s did mention it, although it was not prominently known.

Personal Bests: 220yH – 23.0 (1924); 400H – 53.2 (1924).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1924 Summer Olympics Athletics USA Charley Brookins
400 metres Hurdles, Men (Olympic) AC
4 × 400 metres Relay, Men (Olympic) United States DNS