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The figures above are from the first illustrated book on gymnastics published in the United States. The book’s title, GYMNASTICS, was printed in Boston in 1896 and copyrighted by the North American Gymnastics Union. I received a copy of the book from Eugene Wettstone who used it as an undergraduate at the University of Iowa. .


Book: "Roots of American Gymnastics"
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(Third Edition)

A.B. Frederick, Ph.D., Gymnastics Historian

Twenty years in preparation, this book consists of seventy charts and indices to locate people in the American gymnastics family. You will find information about every major figure in USA gymnastics in this unique publication including most Hall of Fame honorees and those playing major roles in the national governing body from the AAU to USGF/USAG. Roots presents, in genealogical form, the “Big Family” of American gymnastics from the mid-1800s to date. State organizations, schools and clubs are represented. More than 1,600 people are identified and indexed. The “Roots” project represents the ongoing work of Dr. Frederick whose decades of research is recognized by many in the gymnastics community. Olympic historian, Dr. John Lucas of Penn State remarked, “In another lifetime, I would attempt the same kind of record for Track and Field.” The author is grateful to those who have helped with the project, especially Abie Grossfeld, Coach of the 1984 Gold Medal US Olympic Men's Gymnastics Team who identified errors, suggested record changes and advised about personalities to be included for all three editions.

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