Magnificent unused official 1996 Atlanta Summer Olympics torch, constructed of gold-plated brass, aluminum, and Georgian pecan hardwood, measuring 31.75″ in length and 2.5″ at its widest point. Designed by Peter Mastrogiannis, the wooden handle represents the connection of the flame between heaven and earth, and the torch's twenty-two reeds, representing every host city of the Olympic Games since 1896, are gathered by bands at the top and bottom, with the top displaying the Atlanta Games logo and the quilt of leaves design, and the bottom band listing all Olympic cities and their dates since 1896. The torch relay was run from April 27 to July 19, 1966, and covered 26,875 km across the United States by over 12,000 torchbearers. Its journey included a trek on the Pony Express, a ride on the Union Pacific Railroad, and the first instance in which an Olympic relay torch made its way into space when it was carried aboard Space Shuttle Columbia as part of STS-78.
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