Bring back some good or bad memories


May 21, 2014

Kathrine Switzer, the First Woman to Run the Boston Marathon, 1967

April 19th, 1967 Kathrine Switzer made marathon history. She was the first woman to enter and complete the Boston Marathon as a numbered runner.
The first woman to actually run the Boston Marathon was Roberta Gibb in 1966. She had written the director of the to express her interest in running, but was told that women were physiologically incapable of finishing the marathon. Undaunted, Gibb traveled to Boston and jumped in amongst the runners when the race had started.
After realizing that a woman was running, race organizer Jock Semple went after Switzer shouting, “Get the hell out of my race and give me those numbers.” However, Switzer’s boyfriend and other male runners provided a protective shield during the entire marathon.

For decades, Kathrine Switzer has received letters and photos from women around the world, all of them praising the number 261. Some women even show her their “261” tattoos.

“What they were really telling me was, ‘That number makes me feel fearless,’” Switzer says. “Because ‘I, too, relate to a story about me being told that I’m not welcome or I’m not good enough or I can’t do it.’”


Post a Comment



Browse by Decades

Popular Posts


09 10