National Archives News

Heating Up for the Summer Olympics!

Swimmer Susan Rapp with other competitors at the 1984 LA Olympics NAID 6380010

The 2024 Summer Olympics will be held in Paris, France, from July 26 to August 11. There are 206 countries expected to participate, and more than 15 million tourists are expected in the City of Lights during the event. These Games will feature the debut of breaking, also known as breakdancing, as an Olympic event. It will also mark the first time the Olympics has reached gender parity regarding number of athletes. Of the 10,500 athletes participating in the Games, half will be women.

Selected Photographs from National Archives Holdings

View Summer Olympic Records from Our Catalog
Within our holdings are words and images that document U.S. participation in the Summer Games. You may view a selection of those records in the National Archives Catalog.
Going for the Gold - View a variety of records held at the National Archives related to historic Olympic Games and participants.
Olympic Fever! - View photographs of service members during the 1984 Olympics, which are part of the series Combined Military Service Digital Photographic Files, 1982 - 2007.

Video Resources
Armat Collection: Olympic Games - Includes silent sequences of the 1900 Olympics.
Carl Lewis - 1987 - Sports writer Richard Brown reminiscences on Carl Lewis's four gold medal wins in the 1984 Olympics.
If Gold Is Our Destiny: How a Team of Mavericks Came Together for Olympic Glory - The incredible story of how a group of free-spirited players and their demanding coach captured the heart of a nation and became one of the greatest indoor volleyball teams of all time. 
Path Lit by Lightning: The Life of Jim Thorpe with author David Maraniss and Anita Thorpe - A documentary feature on Jim Thorpe, a member of the Sac and Fox Nation, who rose to world fame as a mythic talent who excelled at every sport.
The Big Picture Episode 250 - This episode includes footage from the 1952 Olympics.
The Negro Soldier - This wartime documentary includes footage of Jesse Owens and other Black athletes as they competed in the 1936 Berlin Olympics.
Universal Newsreel Volume 25, Release 574 - At the 1952 Olympic team trials, records fall as top track and field athletes battle for places on this year's Olympic team.
Universal Newsreel Volume 29, Release 79 - Sports lovers everywhere mourn the passing of "Babe" Didrikson Zaharias, the beloved "world's greatest woman athlete." Highlights of her career, including the 1932 Olympics where she burst into fame, are reviewed.
Universal Newsreel Volume 33, Release 74 - Features highlights of the closing days of the 1960 Rome Olympics.
Welcome to Los Angeles - Olympic City - 1984 - A view of the city of Los Angeles and the extensive preparations that were made for participants and visitors to the 1984 Summer Olympic Games.

Educational Resources
DocsTeach Activities: 1936 Berlin Olympics
The 1936 Berlin Olympics - "Teaching Americans and the Holocaust" with National Archives Primary Sources
Young Learners Program: Meet Babe Didrickson

Ford in Focus: “Buckeye Bullet”
Hoover Heads: Hoover and the 1932 Olympic Games
Pieces of History: U.S. Servicemembers at the 1984 Olympic Games
Pieces of History: Cold War Diplomatic Games: The 1984 Los Angeles Summer Olympics
Pieces of History: En Garde! A History of Fencing
Rediscovering Black History: Jesse Owens, American Hero
Pieces of History: The Greatest Athlete of the First Half of the Century
Reagan Library Education Blog: Ronald Reagan’s remarks when the Olympic Torch came to the White House in 1984
Unwritten Record: This Week in Universal News: The 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin