Wrestling at the 1904 Summer Olympics

Dates 14 – 15 October 1904
Medal Events 7

The Olympic wrestling championships for 1904 were held on 14-15 October in the infield of the Olympic Stadium at Francis field. The events doubled as the United States AAU Championships. Technically, there were no foreign entrants and no foreign competitors, although it has since turned out that several of the competitors still had Norwegian citizenship, although by 1904 they lived in the United States. The rules for the 1904 Olympic wrestling championships, however, did allow entrants from any country. There was no restriction on nationality at all. It was simply that no foreign residents elected to compete. Some of this may have been due to the fact that the events were held very late in the year, and many of the foreign athletes had returned to Europe by then.

Of the seven weight classes none had more than 10 entrants. Several Americans defended their national titles, among them Robert Curry who had been national champion at 105 pounds in 1903 and also won in 1904; George Mehnert, who won his third consecutive national championship at 115 pounds, and Jack Niflot who won his fourth consecutive national championship at 125 pounds.

Despite the fact that there were no true foreign competitors, there was no real reason not to include the wrestling competitions as an Olympic sport in 1904. They meet all our criteria for consideration as an Olympic sport, and although they were far from memorable, they should be included.

The format was that all weight classes were held as a single elimination tournaments. All those losing to the winner and runner-up had the right to compete for third-place in a a new tournament, though results of those matches are not known to any degree. Bouts were to be six minutes with three minute overtimes, should they be necessary. In the finals the first overtime was to be six minutes.


Event Status Date Participants NOCs
Light-Flyweight, Freestyle (≤105 pounds), Men Olympic 14 – 15 October 1904 4 1
Flyweight, Freestyle (≤115 pounds), Men Olympic 14 – 15 October 1904 3 1
Bantamweight, Freestyle (≤125 pounds), Men Olympic 14 – 15 October 1904 7 1
Featherweight, Freestyle (≤135 pounds), Men Olympic 14 – 15 October 1904 9 1
Lightweight, Freestyle (≤145 pounds), Men Olympic 14 – 15 October 1904 10 1
Welterweight, Freestyle (≤158 pounds), Men Olympic 14 – 15 October 1904 10 1
Heavyweight, Freestyle (>158 pounds), Men Olympic 14 – 15 October 1904 5 1
42 (42/0) 1 (1/0)


Event Gold Silver Bronze
Light-Flyweight, Freestyle, Men Bob CurryUSA John HeinUSA Gustav TiefenthalerUSA
Flyweight, Freestyle, Men George MehnertUSA Gustav BauerUSA William NelsonUSA
Bantamweight, Freestyle, Men Jack NiflotUSA Gus WesterUSA Louis StreblerUSA
Featherweight, Freestyle, Men Ben BradshawUSA Ted McLearUSA Charles ClapperUSA
Lightweight, Freestyle, Men Otto RoehmUSA Rudolph TesinyUSA Al ZirkelUSA
Welterweight, Freestyle, Men Charles EricksenUSA Bill BeckmanUSA Jerry WinholtzUSA
Heavyweight, Freestyle, Men Bernhoff HansenUSA Franz KuglerUSA Fred WarmboldUSA

Medal table

NOC Gold Silver Bronze Total
United States USA 7 7 7 21