Meyer Prinstein

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games • Competed in Intercalated Games
Full nameMeyer•Prinstein
Used nameMeyer•Prinstein
Other namesMejer Prinsztejn
Born22 December 1878 in Szczuczyn, Podlaskie (POL)
Died10 March 1925 in New York, New York (USA)
Measurements180 cm / 74 kg
AffiliationsSyracuse Orange, Syracuse (USA) / I-AAC, Queens, New York (USA)
NOC United States
Medals OG IG
Gold 3 1
Silver 1 0
Bronze 0 0
Total 4 1


While attending Syracuse, Meyer Prinstein won the 1898 IC4A long jump with a new American record of 23-7¾ (7.21) and two weeks later at the New York AC Games he posted a world record of 23-8⅞ (7.235). Prinstein’s duels with Alvin Kraenzlein were the highlight of many track meets at the turn of the century and they met three times in major meets in 1900. Prinstein opened with a new world record of 24-7¼ (7.50) at the Penn Relays, then Kraenzlein took the IC4A title and the Olympic gold medal, although that victory engendered considerable ill feeling between the two athletes. At the end of the qualifying round Prinstein held a narrow lead and he then declined to compete in the final because it was held on a Sunday. Prinstein claimed that he had an agreement with Kraenzlein that neither would compete in the final, but either Kraenzlein did not know this, or he reneged on the promise, because he returned to the Racing Club de Paris on that Sunday and beat Prinstein’s mark by a mere quarter of an inch. It seems likely that Kraenzlein did, in fact, renege on an agreement – it is unlikely that Prinstein, a Jew, would refuse to compete on Sunday unless in support of his teammates’ stand. Prinstein’s response to Kraenzlein’s actions was to take action of his own. He punched Kraenzlein, but they were quickly pulled apart before a fight ensued. After graduating from Syracuse in 1901, Prinstein joined the Irish-American AC and at the 1904 Olympics became the only man to ever win the long jump and triple jump at the same Olympics. Besides his Olympic successes, Prinstein won the AAU long jump title four times between 1898 and 1906. Prinstein later practiced as a lawyer, but died rather young.

Personal Bests: 100 – unknown; 400 – 50.6 (1904); LJ – 24-7¼ (7.50) (1900); TJ – 47-5¾ (14.47) (1900).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1900 Summer Olympics Athletics USA Meyer Prinstein
Long Jump, Men (Olympic) 2 Silver
Triple Jump, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold
Standing Triple Jump, Men (Olympic) DNS
100 metres, Handicap, Men (Olympic (non-medal)) 2 h13 r1/3
1904 Summer Olympics Athletics USA Meyer Prinstein
60 metres, Men (Olympic) 5
100 metres, Men (Olympic) 4 h2 r1/2
200 metres, Men (Olympic) DNS
400 metres, Men (Olympic) 5
Long Jump, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold
Long Jump, Men (Olympic (non-medal)) 1
Triple Jump, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold
1906 Intercalated Games Athletics USA Meyer Prinstein
100 metres, Men (Intercalated) 2 h10 r1/3
400 metres, Men (Intercalated) DNS
Marathon, Men (Intercalated) DNS
110 metres Hurdles, Men (Intercalated) DNS
Pole Vault, Men (Intercalated) DNS
Long Jump, Men (Intercalated) 1 Gold
Standing Long Jump, Men (Intercalated) DNS
Triple Jump, Men (Intercalated) 11
Pentathlon (Ancient), Men (Intercalated) DNS