| Event type

Pentathlon, Men

Date 7 July 1912 — 13:30
LocationStockholms Olympiastadion, Stockholm
Participants26 from 11 countries
FormatScored by points-for-place in each event. Twelve top finishers after three events advanced to the fourth event (discus throw). Six top finishers (and ties) advanced to the fifth event (1,500 metres). After three events, the totals were re-scored counting the marks among only the 12 qualifiers for the final two events. Ties were broken using the decathlon scoring tables.

At the eastern U.S. Olympic Trials on 18 May 1912, held in New York, Jim Thorpe won easily, setting what is considered the first world record in the pentathlon with 3,656.980 points (3,372 on the 1985 tables). He was considered the American favorite in the Olympic pentathlon, but it was difficult to handicap the field as the event had never been contested internationally.

Thorpe solved the problem rather simply by winning four of the five events contested. Only in the javelin throw was he beaten by any athlete, as both Sweden’s Hugo Wieslander and Oscar Lemming posted longer javelin throws. Thorpe’s dominance was almost complete. Using 1912 scoring tables, his margin of victory was over 400 points.

But as in the decathlon, Jim Thorpe only kept his pentathlon gold medal until early 1913 when he was disqualified for professionalism. The gold medal reverted to Norway’s Ferdinand Bie. For a complete description of the Thorpe controversy, see his bio on Olympedia. Thorpe has also been awarded the Challenge Trophy for the pentathlon, which had been donated by the King of Sweden.

In 1982, after research by Bob Wheeler and Florence Ridlon, it was discovered that Thorpe’s medals should not have been removed, as any dispute as to eligibility had to have been made within 30 days after the end of the 1912 Olympics, but his medals were removed about 6 months later. The IOC restored Thorpe as the gold medalist but he was listed as the co-gold medalist with Ferdinand Bie in the pentathlon and with Hugo Wieslander in the decathlon.

Finally, in 2022, the IOC restored Thorpe as the sole gold medalist and would now list Bie and Wieslander as co-silver medalists. The official announcement from the IOC on 15 July 2022 was as follows: “On 15 July 2022, on the day of the 110th anniversary of Thorpe’s medal in decathlon, the IOC announced its decision to display the name of Jim Thorpe as the sole gold medallist in pentathlon and decathlon at the Olympic Games Stockholm 1912. The IOC explained in its communication that this development was possible after the engagement of the Bright Path Strong organisation, supported by IOC Member Anita DeFrantz, who had contacted the Swedish Olympic Committee (SOC) and the surviving family members of Hugo K. Wieslander, who had been named as the gold medallist in decathlon when Thorpe was stripped of his medals in 1913. The family had confirmed that Wieslander himself had never accepted the Olympic gold medal allocated to him, and had always been of the opinion that Jim Thorpe was the sole legitimate Olympic gold medallist. The same declaration was received from the Norwegian Olympic and Paralympic Committee and Confederation of Sports, whose athlete, Ferdinand Bie, was named as the gold medallist when Thorpe was stripped of the pentathlon title.”

PosNrAthleteNOCPointsPoints (1912A Tables)Points (1985 Tables)Long JumpJavelin Throw200 metresDiscus Throw1,500 metres
1Jim ThorpeUSA74041.53036607.0746.7122.935.574:44.8Gold
2Ferdinand BieNOR213623.84033366.8546.4523.531.795:07.8Silver1
3Jim DonahueUSA293475.86533166.8338.2823.029.644:51.0Silver
4Frank LukemanCAN293396.97532046.4536.0223.233.765:00.2Bronze
5Austin MenaulUSA303378.21032256.4035.8523.031.384:49.6
6Avery BrundageUSA313451.93031846.5842.8524.234.72
7Hugo WieslanderSWE323540.56032556.2749.5624.130.744:53.1
8Gösta HolmérSWE302716.78522856.0245.4624.031.78
9Inge LindholmSWE302706.20523186.3241.9423.530.47
10Oscar LemmingSWE316.5549.5124.627.64
11Nils FjästadSWE326.4340.1523.630.43
12Emil KukkoFIN356.1944.4324.029.97
13Otto BäurleGER386.5234.2923.6
14Einar NilssonSWE396.2343.6724.3
15Erik KugelbergSWE401982.87517516.4542.0224.9
16Charles LombergSWE401931.05017426.5337.1524.4
17Pierre FailliotFRA426.2933.4623.2
18Hugo EricsonSWE445.5843.7424.0
19Jack EllerUSA476.1733.3623.1
20Julius WagnerSUI526.2241.3125.3
21Gustav KrojerAUT546.1039.8924.7
22Géo AndréFRA605.9834.8324.6
23Mkrtich MkryanTUR675.5936.8726.4
24Alfredo PaganiITA685.8634.2325.2
DNFKarl von HaltGER42.75
DNFJosef WaitzerGER
DNSAngelo PedrelliITA
DNSErnö HolecsekHUN
DNSMichail NomikosGRE
DNSHarry FrykbergUSA
DNSLászló LichteneckertHUN
DNSClément MentrelFRA
DNSLeone LinardiITA
DNSFrigyes Wiesner-MezeiHUN
DNSKay SchwendsenDEN
DNSGiulio AlvisiITA
DNSJindřich JirsákBOH
DNSRodolfo HammersleyCHI
DNSSvend LangkjærDEN
DNSAarne SalovaaraFIN
DNSAndré FouacheFRA
DNSRaoul PaoliFRA
DNSAlex AbrahamGER
DNSKostas TsiklitirasGRE
DNSGyörgy LuntzerHUN
DNSCarlo ButtiITA
DNSManlio LegatITA
DNSUlrich BaaschRUS
DNSKnut LindbergSWE
DNSBertil UgglaSWE
DNSPaul ZerlingSWE
DNSPlatt AdamsUSA
DNSHarry BabcockUSA
DNSRoy MercerUSA
DNSGeorge PhilbrookUSA