George Horace Breed was born in the Derby City in 1876, one hundred years after the country was. Breed holds an interesting distinction in the city though, as Louisville’s first representative in the Olympics.
An expert fencer, Breed made his way to the world’s ultimate athletic stage in 1912 in Stockholm, Sweden. Breed, who was 35 at the time, won fourth place in the Men’s foil individual, and that would prove to be his highest honor that year.
It wasn’t until twelve years later when Breed would make his way back to the Olympics, which were in Paris in 1924. At this point, a 47 year old veteran, Breed entered the fencing competition with a knowledge of the sport which served him well, as he led the U.S. Fencing team to an impressive string of victories.
Let’s back up though, Breed had long been known as one of the nation’s top fencers, leading his alma mater of Harvard in his college days. At Harvard he won the IFA Individual championship in 1899, and was a major factor in the school’s fifth fencing championship.
Following that between 1908 and 1909 Breed won six medals at the U.S. Nationals, four bronze and two silvers.
At the age of 79 the Fencing legend passed away in New York City, today he is in the U.S. Fencing Hall of Fame, an organization out of Louisiana that honors America’s fencing tradition- both present and past.
With an origin in the city though, and with a legacy that’s internationally so well respected in the fencing community it’s no wonder why George Breed is a Sports legend of the ‘Ville. Outside Sources: U.S. Fencing Hall of Fame, Sports Reference, George Breed - Image courtesy of the U.S. Fencing Hall of Fame
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