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Chancellor of the Exchequer letters patent of Gladstone, 1873
The (Swedish General) Viktor Balck Olympic Games- Founding Archive
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Statesmen |Koerber - 1920s friend, then foe of Hitler |The Viktor von Koerber WWI Aviation Archive|
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Heroines | "Girl who defied Hitler" at 1936 Olympics: biography Inge Sorensen Archive: items First ever (gold NYC) Women's Club Medal of Honor Award Diplomas to great Jewess opera singer
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The Inge Sorensen 1936 Olympics - defiance of Hitler Archive: biographical perspective
Excerpts from the Copenhagen Post, 17 March 2011:
The swimmer whose defiance captivated their hearts: ‘Little Inge’, Denmark’s super swimming star dies and with her a piece of history
She was just 12 years old when she swam to a bronze medal at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin and refused to heil Hitler as she stood on the winners’ podium. When she returned from the games, her train, the Berlin Express, was met by 30,000 fans. Sørensen was paraded through the streets of Copenhagen to the harbour, where she was met by a boat that sailed her ceremoniously home, to... just north of Copenhagen.
Radio journalist Gunnar ‘Nu’ Hansen... gave Sørensen the epithet ‘Little Captivating Inge’… which even inspired a popular song.
The 1936 Olympics, the first four: (right to left) Martha Genenger, second, Hideka Maehata, first, Inge Sorensen, third....
200 Metre Breast Stroke -Women: Competed: 11 nations with 22 participants.
Results: Hideko Maehata (Japan), 3:03.6 min. Second: Martha Genenger (Germany), 3:04.2 min. Third: Inge Sorensen (Denmark), 3:07.8 min.
Inge Sorensen (1924-2011) in 1936
Part of the Inge Sorensen Archive (from Steve Davis' Numismatic Auctions, May 2012);
the remainder of the Archive is from Ingrid O'Neil's September 15, 2012 sale.
'Little Lovely Inge' song album cover, 1936; based on the moniker granted to her by radio journalist Gunnar 'Nu' Hansen while reporting live for Danish Radio from the Olympics in Berlin. * Above is just a depiction,
an original of which is not provided in the group for sale.
Inge in victory parade, Copenhagen, 1936, waving (on right)
'Little Captivating Inge' (right) at Templehof Airport, Berlin, 1936, with Danish gold swimming medal winner Ragnhild Hveger.
By winning the Bronze medal in the women's 200 meter breaststroke race at the age of twelve, she holds the distinction of being the youngest Olympic Games medallist in swimming, and second-youngest in any individual event.
By conspicuously refusing to extend her arm in the "Heil Hitler" salute as she stood on the winners’ podium during the Presentation of Medals ceremony (as was expected of all Aryans*, such as the Silver medal winner standing behind her), Inge became a symbol of anti-Nazi steadfastness. (Below, she stands on the podium's right side; 11 August 1936.)
* Nazi doctrine held that the Aryan race (also known as the Nordic race) is comprised of almost all Germans, Dutch, and Scandinavians, and many British and Baltic peoples.
Her anti–Hitler conduct is credited with inspiring her fellow Danes to resist WWII Nazi occupation policies, esp. in saving Jews from extermination. Aside from the Jesse Owens saga, her anti–Nazi stand was the most remembered conduct in the infamous 1936 Berlin Games.
Ragnhild Hveger with Inge (second from the left in light jacket) after she won the 1938 European Championship, held in London. Hveger’s pro-Nazi stand contrasted with Inge’s anti-Hitler conduct.
Goodbye To The Girl Who Defied Hitler Craig Lord Mar 25, 2011
Inge Sørensen, born 18 July 1924, and a Danish swimmer who held the distinction of being the youngest Olympic Games medallist in swimming and second-youngest in any individual event, has passed away. She was 86. Bronze medallist in the 200m breaststroke at the 1936 Summer Olympics at the age of 12 years and 24 days, Sørensen was born in Skovshoved, Gentofte, and died in New Jersey, USA, on March 9.
She was the girl who refused to heil when Hitler walked out to present the medals for the breaststroke race won by Hideko Maehata (JPN) ahead of Martha Geneger (GER), before the two countries those top two represented would plunge the world into war.
At home in Denmark, Sørensen was known as ‘Little Captivating Inge’, a moniker granted to her by radio journalist Gunnar ‘Nu’ Hansen while reporting live for Danish Radio from the Olympics in Berlin. The nickname inspired a popular song.
The bronze medallist returned home from Berlin to Denmark by train, her arrival marked by 30,000 screaming fans. She was paraded through the streets of Copenhagen to the harbour, where she was met by a boat that then set sail to the blow of bunting homeward bound to Skovshoved, just north of the Danish capital.
In one of her last interviews, she told a Danish paper that she had been blessed with raw talent and had hardly trained. She then apologised for bragging.
“I trained one hour a week at the swimming hall in Østerbro," said Sørensen. "The rest of the time was in the harbour or at the beach in Skovshoved - where I played in the water with my friends and swam out to the stone that I called ‘my dad’s stone’. If I really wanted to do something special, then I might swim to the stone two times. I was a sort of natural talent, who lived by the strength in my legs and barely felt the water’s resistance at all, because I was so thin. I had nothing like the other swimmers’ power. Oh, that sounds like bragging - nobody wants to hear about that.”
Sørensen, who gave up watching television because she hated to see how commercial sports had become, held a special place in Danish hearts for having defied Hitler. Professor Hans Bonde from the University of Copenhagen wrote the book ‘Football with the Foe: Danish sport under the swastika’ in 2008. It dealt with a difficult theme: how athletes and the Danish football federation, among others, co-operated with the Nazis during the German occupation of Denmark from 1940-1945.
The Nazis had used ‘Aryan’ female sports stars as examples of their supposed superiority, Bonde recalls. The evidence is nowhere best portrayed than in Leni Riefenstahl’s ‘Olympia’ film of the 1936 Olympics and its propaganda machine.
“Women swimmers were incomparably the most popular sportspeople of the time, and attention was primarily focused on Ragnhild Hveger, Inge Sørensen and Jenny Kammersgaard,” Bonde writes. But unlike Hveger and Kammersgaard, Sørensen was “less willing to compete in games with the occupying forces”.
Hveger, one of the most successful swimmers in history, and Kammersgaard, both went down in Danish sports history as "Nazi sympathisers", as the Copenhagen Post put it. But Sørensen was different: Nazi leaders wanted her to race German champion Annie Kapell - but the 12-year-old shook her head and that was that.
Fear more than conscience may have been at play, Bonde tells the Post: “We don’t know her motives. Since she didn’t have any hesitations to meet the Germans during the war in Denmark, the argument that it was her parents’ fear that prevented her from going to Germany to compete seems probable."
Sørensen broke 14 Danish records and three world records as an 11-year-old. When she took Olympic bronze at 12 years and 24 days she became the second youngest female winner of a medal after Luigina Giavotti, an 11-year-old Italian gymnast who took silver in 1928.
At 20, when Sørensen took a swimming instructors' course, she was forced to retire as a competitor because of prevailing amateur rules. She moved to Sweden and coached national-team swimmers there. Sørensen married fellow swimmer and engineer Janus Tabur in 1948 and the couple settled in the US in 1951. On three occasions, they sailed their own boat across the Atlantic on visits home.
Half of Inge Sørensen’s ashes were scattered over her garden in New Jersey, the other half will be placed on the family grave in Ordrup Kirkegård.
J.A. Schramek & Associates
Danish Women's Biographical Dictionary - Inge Sorensen
Sorensen, Inge * 18.7.1924 in Skovshoved sg.
Parents: fishmonger Johan Sigvald S. (1896-1969) and Johanna Cecilie Jensen (1899-1967).
~ 31.5.1948 with engineer Janus Tabur, * 20.2.1918 in Copenhagen, s. of laborer Peter T. and Christiane Margrethe Jacobsen.
Children: Christina Bente (1952), Alan Henry (1956).
At the Olympic Games (Olympics) in Berlin in 1936 won the 12-year-old IS a bronze medal in the breaststroke. With this sensational performance, she was both the subject of a national celebration and for a discussion of lower age limits for participation in competitions. The journalist Gunnar Now Hansen gave her the nickname Little adorable Inge, and in Denmark gathered people around radio aids to hear his reports in the first live transmission of a foreign sport event.
IS grew up in Skovshoved north of Copenhagen and swam already as a kid in the nearby Sound. In eight years, she began to swim in the Danish Women's Gymnastics Club, where her gym teacher from the school was swim coach. The training took place including 1929-30 in Copenhagen's first swimming Østerbro pool, which was built in 1929-30. She was like many of the inter-war period successful female swimmers trained by Ingeborg Paul Petersen, who was the head of Paul Petersen Institute. IS was talented, and she competed early with the adult swimmers. She was backed up by her parents, who taught her that it was equally important to be able to take defeat with a smile as providing a fine performance. Her breakthrough was she like 11-year-old, where she worked very fine times in the breaststroke. She won nine Danish championships in the years 1936-44, was Nordic Champion in 1937 and 1939 and European Champion in 1938. She sat 14 Danish records in the 200, 400 and 500 meters breaststroke and three world records.
At the Olympics in Berlin in 1936 was IS with the youngest participant. When she won bronze in the finals, Denmark got its first medal, and her performance attracted a huge attention both in Berlin and Denmark. On her return were athletes, and especially girls swim IS and Ragnhild Hveger, cheered by 30,000 people who had taken up positions at Enghave Station, where Berlin Express with. Later we went to South Beach waterpark, which IS sailed for more tribute in her hometown Skovshoved. Along the way, people in their thousands along the route and waved to the Olympic heroine. A few days later published musician Carl Viggo Meincke impact driver Small adorable Inge.
With its pure youthfulness was IS made into a national symbol in a time of armament and threatening external enemies. But success also had a negative side. Following her performance traveled sport leaders and critics a debate on the minimum age for participation in competitions. Danish Sports Federation (DIF) adopted in November 1936 a proposal from the President Major General Holten Castenschiold to set a lower age limit of 16 years for participation in competitions. IS, however, continued its successful swimming career, so apparently had DIF difficult to trace its decision into effect.
IS graduated from Esther Berners Department of dance, ballet, gymnastics and swimming in 1946 and taught subsequently in gymnastics and swimming both in the private sector and associations. After she 1948 had married the engineer Janus Tabur, they settled because of his work first in South Africa, since in Canada and from 1951 in the United States. IS taught gymnastics and swimming in different countries, she lived in, but stopped when she gave birth to her first child in 1952. She continued to swim in recreational basis, until she had to quit because of sinus infections. IS reached the top of her career, when she was a child. And just her childish innocence led to such a significant breakthrough in the media that subsequent generations still know who "Small adorable Inge" is.
Anne Lykke Poulsen
Opening ceremony of 1936 Games