Pole Vaulting Classics: Harry Babcock

Harry Babcock began his career as a long jumper, placing third at the IC4As in 1909. He won the AAU pole vault in 1910 and 1912 and the IC4A title in 1911.

Marc Wright set a new world record of 13-2¼ (4.02) at the 1912 Olympic Trials, but in Stockholm, Babcock was always in command. Frank Nelson, Wright, and Babcock were the only competitors to clear 12-7½ (3.85) and Babcock was the only one over when the bar was raised to 12-9¼ (3.89). He then went on to clear 12-11½ (3.95) before failing three times at a new world record height of 13-3¾ (4.06).

Babcock graduated from Columbia in 1912 with an engineering degree, but spent most of his business life as a salesman with a lumber company in Irvington, New York.

Personal Best: 12-11½ (3.95) (1912).


Harry Babcock
Harry Babcock

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