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Ancient Greece was the beginning of what we know as the Olympic games. The beginning of the 20th Century was the modern day revival of the Olympic games that we have grown familiar with.
The first Modern Day Olympic games began in 1896, the location of course, Athens, Greece. Fourteen different nations attended the games, and among them was of course, the United States. The U.S. had twenty-seven competitors which competed in 16 events out of a total of forty-three. All competitors were men. This is the only Olympics to date, where there were no women allowed to participate in the event.
The president of the International Olympic Committee, Pierre de Coubertin, said that women participating in sports was "indecent." Apparently, his influence and opinion, was not something others felt the same about. Women eventually made their Olympic debut in the 1900 summer games and over time have slowly dominated the summer games. In fact, in the last Summer Olympics in 2012, women competitors received 103 gold medals in comparison to their male counterparts, who won 42.
It's no surprise that times have changed since 1896, and women have shown that they are a dominate force to reckon with in terms of sports and competitions. Stats don't lie and I can't wait to see women perform in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.
This Chart is a representation of the medal counts between men and women since 1896 to the last Olympic Games in 2012. You can visually see the progression of medals for women as we get more into the 21st Century. If you click on the drop down, you have a choice of years, beginning at 1896 to 2012. As you can see if you click on 1896, there are no women representing the US, during that year. You can hover over, and see the actual medal counts for men and women for the year chosen in the drop down.
This chart shows 3 different amount of U.S. participants during the Olympics. The first choice is total, which will show you both men and women. The next two choices you can choose either men and women and view the number of participants for either gender. You can see the number rising for participants in women.