Lot #6005
Ellery Clark's Collection of (42) Athletic Medals

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Estimate: $3000+
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Impressive collection of 42 athletic medals presented to American track and field athlete Ellery Clark (1874-1949), who was the first modern Olympic champion in high jump and long jump, and the only person to have won both Olympic events, doing so at the Athens 1896 Olympics. Deriving from the estate of his son and namesake, Ellery H. Clark, Jr., this medal collection dates from 1895 to 1931 and contains accolades from a variety of early New York and New England area athletic events, which are grouped and chronologically listed below:

(2) Newton Athletic Association medals, both 1893 silver

(7) New England AAAU
- Worcester 1895 gold
- (2) Worcester 1895 silver
- (3) bronze and (1) silver (no year, all four share the same design)

(2) Harvard Athletic Association
- 1894 silver for Running Broad Jump
- 1895 gold for Record Throwing 16 lb Hammer (237 feet, 7 inches)

(2) New York Athletic 1895
- Silver for 16 lb Shot Put
- Bronze (no event)

(4) Amateur Athletic Association of Canada medals from 1896
- (3) Silvers for 120 yd Hurdle, Running High Jump, and 16 lb Shot Put
- (1) Bronze for Throwing 56 lb Weight (chain link separations to the Shot Put and Throwing Medals)

(5) Boston Athletic Association
- 1897 All Round Championship gold first prize
- (Identical as above sans information, also gold)
- Interscholastic Relay, February 26, 1927
- Interscholastic Relay, February 11, 1928
- Interscholastic Relay, February 16, 1929

(14) New England Association Amateur Athletic Union
- 1905 silver for Throwing 56 lb Weight
- 1905 bronze for 120 yard High Hurdles
- 1906 silver for 120 yard Hurdles
- 1906 silver for 56 lb Weight
- 1906 silver for 16 lb Hammer
- 1906 bronze for High Jump
- 1907 bronze for 16 lb Hammer
- 1907 silver for 56 lb Weight
- 1908 bronze for 56 lb Weight
- 1908 bronze for 16 lb Shot Put
- 1910 silver for 120 yd Hurdles
- 1910 silver for 56 lb Weight
- 1911 silver for 16 lb Hammer
- Bronze Running High Jump (no year)

(2) Amateur Athletic Union of the United States
- 1895 bronze for Running High Jump
- 1906 bronze for All Round Championship

(1) BYMCA: 1905 gold for 12 lb Shot Put

(1) Pastime Athletic Club: 1907 bronze for Potato Race

(1) Irish American Athletic Association: 1914 silver for 56 lb Weight

(1) Boston University AA: 1931 gold for One Mile Walk

Included with the collection is a three-ring ‘scrapbook’ binder containing various newspaper articles, photographs, and other ephemera related to Clark’s athletic career, which is highlighted an original photograph of Clark’s muscular bareback, annotated below, “Back development, after winning All around Championship 1903”; one of the included newspaper clippings, dated July 20, 1903, features this very image. The latter section of the scrapbook features many clippings and photos that pertain to Clark, Jr., himself a notable athlete and author who wrote three books on the Boston Red Sox and penned biographies of Cy Young, Tris Speaker, and Lefty Grove, among others. Clark, Jr. is pictured in several photos as a member of the Browne & Nichols School track and field team, with his father, Clark, Sr., pictured above as the team’s coach. In overall fine condition.

Ellery Clark holds the distinction of being the only man to win both the Olympic high jump and long jump. As a 22-year-old Harvard grad, he claimed this double feat at the first Modern Olympics with marks of 5´ 11½″ (1.81 m) and 20´ 11″ (6.37 m). On his return from Greece, Clark developed into a highly versatile athlete, winning the National All-Around Championship in 1897 and 1903. In 1904, the American and Olympic All-Around Championship were one and the same event, but Clark was seriously weakened by bronchitis in St. Louis and in his second Olympic appearance he placed no better than fifth in the event that was the forerunner of the modern decathlon. In his professional life, Clark showed all-round talents that even exceeded his sporting versatility. He wrote 19 books, ranging from railway accident law to religious philosophy, and two of his novels were adapted into Hollywood films. He was an alderman of the city of Boston, an assistant track coach at Harvard, a teacher of English composition in Cambridge, and a prominent Boston lawyer.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Olympic Memorabilia
  • Dates: #628 - Ended January 20, 2022