Bernhoff Hansen

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Bernhoff Hansen
Medal record
Men's freestyle wrestling
Representing the  United States
Olympic Games
Gold medal – first place 1904 St. Louis Heavyweight

Bernhoff Otelius Hansen (August 17, 1877 – December 22, 1950) was a Norwegian wrestler who competed in the 1904 Summer Olympics for the United States.

He was born in Rognan in the municipality of Saltdal in Norway. Originally he was a Norwegian wrestler in Nordland, but one and a half years before the 1904 Olympic Games, he left Norway for the United States. He was affiliated with the Brooklyn-based Norwegian Turnverein gymnastic society. Hansen was sponsored by the Norwegian Turnverein at the Olympics in 1904. Hansen won three matches at the 1904 Olympics and won a gold medal in heavyweight category.[1]

First name spelled Bernhoff by FILA and in an article by New York Times from January 16, 1918. By the time of the article he was referred to as "a Norwegian light-heavyweight wrestler". Hansen died in New York City.

In 2012 Norwegian historians found documentation showing that Hansen was registered as an "alien" (foreigner) as late as 1925, and questioning whether he ever received American citizenship. The historians thus petitioned to have Hansen's gold registered as Norwegian.[2]


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