High Jump in History

Events in Sport

  • 1876-03-17 1st record high jump over 6' (Marshall Jones Brooks)
  • 1896-04-06 1st modern Summer Olympic Games open in Athens, Greece; American athlete James Connolly Olympic becomes first modern Olympic champion when he wins the triple jump (then 2 hops and a jump); later 3rd in the long jump, 2nd in the high jump
  • 1896-04-10 High jumper Ellery Clark leads an American sweep of the placings with a leap of 1.81m at the Athens Olympics; his 2nd victory of the Games after taking out the long jump
  • 1936-08-02 Americans Cornelius Johnson, Dave Albritton and Delos Thurber sweep the high jump medals at the Berlin Olympics
  • 1946-02-15 Cornelius Johnson, American high jumper (Olympic gold 1936), dies from bronchopneumonia at 32
  • 1948-08-07 American Alice Coachman becomes the first black woman from any country to win an Olympic gold medal when she takes out the high jump at the London Games
  • 1949-02-05 Huaso sets official world equestrian high-jump record, 2.47 m, Chic
  • 1956-06-29 Charles Dumas makes 1st high jump over 7' (2.13 m)-LA, California
  • 1956-12-01 American Mildred McDaniel jumps world record 1.76m to win the women's high jump gold medal at the Melbourne Olympics; Briton Thelma Hopkins and Russian Mariya Pisareva dead-heat for silver (1.67m)
  • 1968-10-20 American Dick Fosbury using his unconventional technique wins the men's high jump gold medal with 2.24m at the Mexico City Olympics; "Fosbury Flop" becomes accepted most efficient technique
  • 1972-09-04 16 year old Ulrike Meyfarth of West Germany with a world record equalling 1.92m, wins the women's high jump gold medal at the Munich Olympics; youngest winner of individual athletics event in Olympic history
  • 1980-05-25 Jacek Wszoka of Poland sets high jump record (7'8")
  • 1980-05-26 Dietmar Mogenburg of West Germany ties high jump record at 7'8"
  • 1980-08-01 Gerd Wessig of East Germany becomes the first male to set a high jump world record at the Olympics (2.36m [7' 9"] Moscow)
  • 1982-09-14 Trevor Baxter sets skateboard high jump record of 5' 5.7"
  • 1983-06-11 Zhu Jianhua of China set a new world record in high jump at 7-9 14
  • 1983-09-22 Zhu Jianhau (China) sets high jump record at 7'9 3/4"
  • 1984-06-10 Zhu Jian Hua of China high jumps a record 7'10" (2.39m)
  • 1985-08-11 Rudolf Povarnitsin of USSR sets new high jump world record (7'10"12)
  • 1985-09-04 Russian Igor Paklin sets new high jump world record at 2.41m in Kobe, Japan
  • 1987-06-30 Patrik Sjoberg of Sweden set a new world record in high jump
  • 1987-08-30 Stefka Kostadinova of Bulgaria sets high jump woman's record 2.09m (6'10½"), one of the most long-standing records in athletics
  • 1988-02-20 Stefka Kostadinova of Bulgaria sets high jumps indoor world record (2.06 m)
  • 1988-09-08 Javier Sotomayer of Cuba high jumps world record 2.43m
  • 1989-03-04 Javier Sotomayor high jumps indoor world record (2.43m)
  • 1989-07-29 Javier Sotomayor of Cuba sets high jump record (8'0") in San Juan
  • 1992-02-09 Heike Henkel high jumps female indoor world record (2.07m)
  • 2016-08-20 4 women's high jump competitors tie at clearing winning height 1.97m at the Rio Olympics; all then fail at 2.00m; Ruth Beitia of Spain wins the gold based on having no misses prior to bar being raised to 2.00m

Birthdays in Sport

  • 1888-10-30 Konstantinos Tsiklitiras, Greek athlete (Olympic gold standing long jump, bronze high jump 1912, 2 silver 1908), born in Pylos, Greece (d. 1913)
  • 1911-11-20 Jean Shiley, American high jumper (Olympic gold 1932), born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania (d. 1998)
  • 1913-04-13 Dave Albritton, American high jumper (Olympic silver 1936), born in Danville, Alabama (d. 1994)
  • 1913-07-13 Carolina Gisolf, Holland, high jumper (Olympic silver 1928)
  • 1913-08-21 Cornelius Johnson, American high jumper (Olympic gold 1936), born in Los Angeles, California (d. 1946)
  • 1918-11-20 Dora Ratjen, German man possing as woman high jumper (Olympic 4th 1936), born in Erichshof, Bremen, Germany (d. 2008)
  • 1920-03-14 Dorothy Tyler-Odam, Great Britain, high jumper (Olympic silver 36, 48)
  • 1923-11-09 Alice Coachman, American athlete (Olympic gold high jump 1948), born in Albany, Georgia (d. 2014)
  • 1931-01-05 Walt Davis, American high jumper (Olympic gold 1952) and NBA player (Philadelphia Warriors), born in Beaumont, Texas
  • 1933-04-01 Robert Shavlakadze, Georgian high jumper (Olympic gold high jump for Soviet Union 1960), born in Tbilisi, Georgia (d. 2020)
  • 1933-11-04 Mildred McDaniel, American high jumper (Olympic gold 1956), born in Atlanta, Georgia (d. 2004)
  • 1936-03-16 Thelma Hopkins, England, high jumper (Olympic silver 1956)
  • 1936-12-12 Iolanda Balaș, Romanian high jumper (Olympic gold 1960), born in Timișoara, Romania (d. 2016)
  • 1937-02-12 Charles Dumas, American high jumper (Olympic gold 1956; first to clear 7 foot mark), born in Tulsa, Oklahoma (d. 2004)
  • 1945-04-13 Ed Caruthers Jr, American high jumper (Olympic silver 1968), born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • 1946-08-29 Bob Beamon, American high jumper (Olympic gold 1968, 29' 2½" 8.9m), born in Queens, New York
  • 1947-03-06 Dick Fosbury, American high jumper (Olympic gold 1968, "Fosbury Flop"), born in Portland, Oregon
  • 1947-09-16 Ilona Gusenbauer, Austrian high jumper (Olympic bronze 1972), born in Gummersbach, West Germany
  • 1952-04-04 Rosemarie Ackermann, German high jumper (Olympic gold 1976), born in Lohsa, Sachsen, Germany
  • 1953-04-19 Sara Simeoni, Italian high jumper (Olympic gold 1980), born in Rivoli Veronese, Italy
  • 1956-05-04 Ulrike Meyfarth, German high jumper (Olympic gold 1972), born in Frankfurt, Germany
  • 1958-12-15 Eddy Annys, Belgian high jumper
  • 1959-07-16 Gerd Wessig, East German high jumper (1st male to set high jump world record at Olympics (2.36m [7' 9"] Moscow), born in Lübz, Germany
  • 1964-05-05 Heike Henkel, German world record indoor high jumper (Olympic gold 1992), born in Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein
  • 1965-05-25 Stefka Kostadinova, Bulgaria high jumper (world record 1987), born in Plovdiv, Bulgaria
  • 1966-06-17 Clare Look-Jaeger, high jumper, born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • 1967-01-08 Hollis Conway, American high jumper (Olympics-silv/bronze-88, 92), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1968-04-06 Chris Anderson, Australian high jumper (Olympics 1996), born in Western Australia
  • 1970-08-12 Alison Inverarity, Australian high jumper (Olympic 8th 1992, 96)
  • 1971-01-11 Stephen Smith, high jumper, born in Indianapolis, Indiana
  • 1971-02-25 Konstantin Matoussevich, Israeli high jumper (Olympic 7th-1996), born in Kiev, Ukraine
  • 1972-04-29 Gwendolyn Wentland, high jumper, born in Flint, Michigan
  • 1973-08-17 Tim Forsyth, Australian high jumper (Olympic bronze 1992, 96)
  • 1979-04-01 Ruth Beitia, Spanish athlete (Olympic gold women's high jump 2016), born in Santander, Spain
  • 1983-11-08 Blanka Vlašić, Croatian high jumper, born in Split, Croatia
  • 1984-07-01 Donald Thomas, Bahamian high jumper (World Championship gold 2007), born in Freeport, Bahamas
  • 1984-07-26 Kyriakos Ioannou, Cypriot high jumper, born in Limassol, Cyprus

Deaths in Sport

  • 1913-02-10 Konstantinos Tsiklitiras, Greek athlete (Olympic gold standing long jump, bronze high jump 1912, 2 x silver 1908), dies from meningitis at 24
  • 1961-02-27 Platt Adams, American high jumper (Olympic gold 1912), dies at 75
  • 1994-05-14 Dave Albritton, American high jumper (Olympic silver 1936), dies at 81
  • 1998-03-11 Jean Shiley, American high jumper (Olympic gold 1932), dies at 86
  • 2004-01-05 Charles Dumas, American high jumper (Olympic gold 1956; first to clear 7 foot mark), dies at 66
  • 2004-09-30 Mildred McDaniel, American high jumper (Olympic gold 1956), dies at 70
  • 2008-04-22 Dora Ratjen, German man possing as woman high jumper (Olympic 4th 1936), dies at 89
  • 2014-07-14 Alice Coachman, American athlete (Olympic gold high jump 1948), dies of cardiac arrest at 90
  • 2016-03-11 Iolanda Balaș, Romanian high jumper (Olympic gold 1960), dies at 79
  • 2020-03-04 Robert Shavlakadze, Georgian high jumper (Olympic gold high jump for Soviet Union 1960), dies at 86