THE JIM THORPE STORY
A young Sac and Fox and Potawatomi man resists the government’s attempt to strip him and his fellow Native American youth of their identity and culture. Spurred on by the last words his father ever spoke to him, “Son, you’re an Indian, I want you to show other races what an Indian can do,” Jim Thorpe transcends every obstacle to become a beacon of hope for Native people and “The World’s Greatest Athlete.”
Cast & Crew
take back what was stolen:
Return Jim Thorpe’s olympic win
Jim Thorpe broke barriers at the 1912 Olympics, winning two gold medals in the pentathlon and decathlon, at a time when Native Americans weren’t even recognized as U.S. citizens.
Proclaimed “World’s Greatest Athlete,” Wa-Tho-Huk – Bright Path, became an icon of Native American strength and resilience.
So why do the Olympics officially recognize two champions in his events?
Please sign our petition calling on the International Olympic Committee to right this wrong, and join our movement. Thanks for your support!
Get the limited edition Bright Path Strong T-Shirt
When underdog Jim Thorpe dominated the Olympic competition, he became an international icon. Get your limited edition “World’s Greatest Athlete” Bright Path Strong t-shirt, designed by renowned Native American artists Steven Paul Judd and Aaron Silva.
Our Tribal Partners
Tuolumne Band of Mewuk Indians
Sac & Fox Nation
The Mohegan Tribe
Chicken Ranch Rancheria Me-Wuk Indians of California
Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation
Bear River Band of the Rohnerville Rancheria
Shingle Springs Band of Miwok Indians
Bright Path Family
An Icon of Native American Strength & Resilience
I am no more proud of my career as an athlete than I am of the fact that I am a direct descendent of that noble warrior [Chief Black Hawk]—Jim Thorpe
Artwork by Steven Paul Judd
Jim Thorpe is considered by many to be the greatest all-around athlete in the history of modern sports.
Professionally, he played baseball for the New York Giants and football for the Canton Bulldogs where he won three championships. In 1920, he became a founding member and the first president of the National Football League (NFL).
He won Olympic Gold Medals in the pentathlon and decathlon in the 1912 Swedish games, representing a United States that didn’t recognize his citizenship.
Entering the final event of the decathlon, Thorpe had such an impressive lead that he only needed to finish 7th or better in the 1,500 meter race to win Olympic Gold. After the runners were called to the track, Thorpe dug into his gym bag to find his shoes missing. Someone had stolen them.
Frantically, he searched for his shoes, to no avail. With the race about to begin, he found two mismatched, badly-worn shoes: one, two-sizes too big, the other, a size too small. With socks doubled up on the one foot, Thorpe put a thin dress sock on the other and got to his mark just in time for the race to begin.
After trailing the pack for the first three laps, Thorpe caught the leaders rounding the final turn, and with a great burst of speed, he surged ahead and won the race by an astounding 25 yards. He captured the Gold Medal and was pronounced “The World’s Greatest Athlete” by King Gustav of Sweden.
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