Historian Andrew Ross on the Unknown Olympic Flag Bearer

12 02 2010

The Olympic Torch En Route to Vancouver

The Winter Olympics will begin in a few hours in Vancouver. (See here, here, and here). Nowadays, it is considered a great privilege for an athlete to be chosen as the country’s flag bearer during the Olympic opening ceremonies.  A few days ago, the identity of the person who will carry Canada’s flag tonight in Vancouver was a subject of speculation on the internet. The photograph of Clara Hughes, the person chosen, will probably grace the front pages of many newspapers tomorrow.

Clara Hughes

But this was not always the case. For instance, at the time of the 1936 Winter Olympics, nobody thought it worthwhile to record the name of Canada’s flag bearer.

Andrew Ross, Canadian Historian

Dr Andrew Ross, a historian of North American sport and business based at the University of Geulph, has some interesting observations about the identity of Canada’s flag bearer in 1936. Check out his most recent post on his hockey history blog.  Ross reports that historians have tentatively identified the 1936 flag bearer using this grainy photograph.

The Dominion of Canada's Flag at the Opening Ceremonies of the 1936 Winter Olympics