1944 Summer Olympics

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Games of the XIII Olympiad
Host cityLondon, United Kingdom
Berlin 1936
Tokyo 1940
London 1948
Garmisch 1936
Cortina 1944
St. Moritz 1948

The 1944 Summer Olympics, which were to be officially known as the Games of the XIII Olympiad, were cancelled due to World War II. It would have been held in London, United Kingdom, which won the bid on the first ballot in a June 1939 IOC election over Rome, Detroit, Lausanne, Athens, Budapest, Helsinki and Montreal. The selection was made at the 38th IOC Session in London in 1939.[1]

Because of the cancellation, London went on to host the 1948 Summer Olympics.

In spite of the war, the IOC organized many events to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of its foundation at its headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland. Held from 17 June to 19 June 1944, this celebration was referred to as "The Jubilee Celebrations of IOC" by Carl Diem, the originator of the modern tradition of the Olympic torch relay.[2]

Polish Prisoners of War (POWs) in the Woldenberg (Dobiegniew) Oflag II-C POW camp were granted permission by their German captors to stage an unofficial POW Olympics during July 23 to August 13, 1944, and an Olympic Flag made with a bed sheet and pieces of coloured scarves was raised. The event has been considered to be a demonstration of the Olympic spirit transcending war.[3]

Bid results[edit]

IOC voting[1]
City Country Round 1
London United Kingdom United Kingdom 20
Rome Italy Italy 11
Detroit United States United States 2
Lausanne  Switzerland Switzerland 1
Athens Kingdom of Greece Greece 0
Budapest Kingdom of Hungary (1920–1946) Hungary 0
Helsinki Finland Finland 0
Montreal  Canada 0

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Past Olympic host city election results". GamesBids. Archived from the original on 24 January 2011. Retrieved 17 March 2011.
  2. ^ "Beijing 2008 Olympic Games: Mount Olympus Meets the Middle Kingdom | Beijing 2008 Olympic Games :: History of the Olympic Games". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 2015-12-11.
  3. ^ Grys, Iwona (1996), "The Olympic Idea Transcending War" (PDF), Olympic Review, XXV (8, April–May 1996): 68.
Preceded by
Tokyo/Helsinki (abandoned)
Summer Olympic Games
London (abandoned)

XIII Olympiad (1944)
Succeeded by