Olympic Site and Timing.
Because the small country of Belgium had displayed extraordinary courage during World War I, Antwerp was selected as the site for the Seventh Olympic Games, held in August 1920. Though admirable in sentiment, the choice of Belgium was unwise since the country had neither the finances nor the time to construct proper facilities for the games; moreover, most of the competing nations were fielding underprepared and underfunded teams.
To raise money quickly, the United States developed an extensive system of spectator-financed tryouts throughout the country. As a result, $163,113.45 in gate receipts and contributions were raised, an amount that exceeded the eventual team costs of $149,261.46. Transporting the team to Europe posed a major difficulty. Many of the large American ships were still in poor condition because of their war duties, but eventually the main group of 254...
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