New-York Historical Society's Bill Shannon Dictionary of New York Sports

Category Archives: Olympics

Eddie Eagan


Eddie Eagan (Olympics, boxing.  Born, Denver, CO, Apr. 26, 1897; died, New York, NY, June 14, 1967.)  The only American ever to win gold medals at both summer and winter Olympic Games, Edward Patrick Francis Eagan later served as chairman of the New York State Athletic Commission.  Eagan served as an officer in both World Wars, rising from lieutenant to lieutenant colonel, and in between graduated Yale, attended Harvard Law, and went to Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar.  He won the light heavyweight gold at Antwerp in the 1920 Games (there were no Winter Games until 1924), defeating Norway’s Sverre Sorsdal in the final.  He was an American heavyweight entrant in 1924 but didn’t qualify.  Eagan won winter gold in 1932 at Lake Placid, N.Y., as a brakeman on the four-man bobsled driven by Billy Fiske.  He served as an assistant U.S. attorney in New York (1933-38) and then represented the Daily News in private practice until early 1942, when he reentered the U.S. Army.  Gov. Thomas E. Dewey appointed Eagan chairman of the Athletic Commission (which regulates boxing in the state) at war’s end in 1945 and Eagan served until 1951.  He then returned to private law practice but served as finance chairman of the U.S. Olympic Committee for the 1956 Olympic cycle and later founded the People-to-People Sports Committee to foster international goodwill through sports, which he headed until his death.  Eagan also authored numerous magazine articles and two books.

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The Bill Shannon Biographical Dictionary of New York Sports is an open database of sports biographies maintained by Jordan Sprechman and Marty Appel. We welcome public and scholarly contributions and suggestions.

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About Bill Shannon

A prolific author, wire service sports reporter, long time Major League Baseball official scorer, football statistician, sports museum founder, theatrical agency owner and public ... read more

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