1894 - Modern Games Founded
1896 - I Olympiad - Athens
1900 - II Olympiad - Paris
      - Vignettes of the 1900 Paris Expo
1904 - III Olympiad - St. Louis
1906 - Intercalated Games - Athens
1908 - IV Olympiad - London
1912 - V Olympiad - Stockholm
1913 - Berlin prepares for 1916 games
1914 - 20th Anniversary of Rebirth of Games
1916 - VI Olympiad - Berlin
1920 - VII Olympiad - Antwerp
1924 - VIII Olympiad - Paris
      - Post Cards
1928 - IX Olympiad - Amsterdam
1932 - X Olympiad - Los Angeles
1936 - XI Olympiad - Berlin
1940 - XII Olympiad - Tokyo
      - XII Olympiad - Helsinki
      - New Zealand Centennial Games
1944 - XIII Olympiad - London
      - German POW Games
1948 - XIV Olympiad - London
1952 - XV Olympiad - Helsinki
1956 - XVI Olympiad - Melbourne
      - XVI Olympiad - Stockholm
1960 - XVII Olympiad - Rome

1916 - VI Olympiad - Berlin

Poster for "Olympic Games" in Amsterdam, 1916

Berlin had been awarded the honor of hosting the 1916 Games, and preparations continued right into 1916, as no one expected WWI to continue, but eventually the Games had to be cancelled. Because they were cancelled, no official poster was issued, but the one above was created for national Games held in Amsterdam, and is often mistakenly advertised as the official poster for 1916.

The design of label 1916-2 below looks as though it *would* have been the official poster for the Berlin games.

The following poster stamps were issued for the scheduled Games:

Click on image below to open an enlarged version in a separate window/tab
Click on the DuBois number beneath the image to display technical data about that label.


DuBois listing:

1. "OLYMPIADE 1916 BERLIN" (white text) "Propagandamarke des Deutschen Reichsverbands für Athletik" (black text), "10" in each corner (white on black). (Propaganda stamp of German Empire Athletic Union) Vignette: two wrestlers (in upper 40% of label, above text), a lined border with double-dotted embellishment between border and perforations, background of text is red, a printer's mark is below. 36x54mm, perf 11.5
    a) red & black,  b) brick-red & black ... Rare


DuBois listing:

2. "OLYMPISCHE SPIELE BERLIN 1916" in lower, black panel. Vignette, in upper 70% of label: the winged Goddess of Victory advancing towards a victorious athlete with an olive branch in her left hand and a crown of laurels in her right hand. Printer's imprint below label: "GEBR HARTKOPF, BERLIN S.W.19." 35x50mm, perf 11.5 Text is bright yellow, figures are white, blue & yellow on a deep blue background ... $14.00





1964 - XVIII Olympiad - Tokyo
1968 - XIX Olympiad - Mexico City
1972 - XX Olympiad - Munich

1924 - I Winter Games - Chamonix
1928 - II Winter Games - St Moritz
1932 - III Winter Games - Lake Placid
1936 - IV Winter Games - Garmisch-Partenkirchen
1940 - V Winter Games - Sapporo
      - V Winter Games - St Moritz
      - V Winter Games - Garmisch-Partenkirchen
1944 - V Winter Games - Cortina d'Ampezzo
1948 - V Winter Games - St Moritz
1952 - VI Winter Games - Oslo
1956 - VII Winter Games - Cortina d'Ampezzo
1960 - VIII Winter Games - Squaw Valley
1964 - IX Winter Games - Innsbruck
1968 - X Winter Games - Grenoble
1972 - XI Winter Games - Sapporo

      - Workers' Olympics

#1916-3a&9a and #1916-3b to 12b

DuBois listing: 12a. "OLYMPISCHE SPIELE BERLIN" below, lettering and design frame in gold. Vignettes: one or two "statuesque" athletes. 40x61mm, perf 11.25. Athletes' bodies are bright green; sword, discus & highlights on bodies are gold; other body details are black; background is gray-green (similar to color of old Statue of Liberty); poses follow:

3a) discus thrower, 4a) runner, 5a) wrestlers, 6a) archer, 7a) high jumper, 8a) fencer, 9a) horseman, lOa) Javelin thrower, 11a) shot-putter, 12a) boxers ... Rare

3b to 12b. Same as Nos. 3a to 12a but background is black ... Rare

Nos. 3 to 12 exist as a se-tenant pane of ten, PM4S

A display page I found on the www claims that these stamps were designed as essays in 1913 by Professor Franz von Stuck, AND that when the 1916 Games were cancelled, the stamps were issued and sold for the benefit of the German National Games (Deutsche Wettkampfe) AND finally that these are the first Olympic stamps depicting modern athletes, albeit not attired in the modern manner. :-)

Reproductions of these labels were issued about 1984 in booklet form from the German Sporthilfe organization - images below. They show up on eBay and other auction sites regularly, fetching typically about $20 for the complete booklet.




#1916-13 and 13a
(12/18/18 - The copy of 1916-13a shown above sold on eBay recently for $68.)

DuBois listing:

13. "NEDERLANDSCH OLYMPISCH COMITE" below. Vignette, above: the head of a Greek God facing to the right, in a black & gold circular frame; label has a decorative border with a thin outer line; in border, at top "1913," at bottom "NOC." Perfs are serrated with black edging 43x55.5mm, perf 13.5, black & gold on cream paper .. Rare

13a. No. 13 with tab at bottom, inscribed with green text - "ZENDT GELDELIJKE BIJDRAGE 19 P. C. HOOFTSTRAAT A'DAM" ... Rare

The text in the tab at the bottom translates "Send Contributions to 19 P. C. Hooftstraat Amsterdam" (P. C. Hoofstraat = Pieter Cornelisz Hooftstraat, which, according to Wikipedia, is today an upscale shopping street in Amsterdam.)

- at left, note the background, which is blue. The ones at top have a brown background. Is this a real variety, or just a result of ageing? (I have to say, the blue looks much better to me.)
- at right, an odd example - the perforations are printed!


#1916-14 perf & imperf

DuBois listing:

14. Swedish Label: "FRAMGANG FÖRPLIKTAR" above; "MEDVERKA VID NATIONALINSAMLINGEN FÖR OLYMPISKA SPELEN I BERLIN 1916" below. Vignette, between texts: three crowns of the Swedish coat of arms on a dark blue background, on top of a light blue tablet on which is inscribed "SVERIGE 1916," in gold; the vignette has a gold edging with a thin, black borderline; the main border of the label is an ornate, rope-like, light & dark blue color; another ornate border, light blue on white, surrounds the vignette; printer's mark, below design: "CENTRALTR STHLM."; the latter and both upper and lower texts are black. 28.5x45mm, perf 11.5 ... $30.00

(Translation: "Success has its obligations. Contribute to the national collection for the Olympic Games in Berlin 1916.")

The second image above is from an old Feldman auction - imperf version of this label.

There were no postage stamps issued for the 1916 Olympics.


I am indebted to Robert J DuBois for allowing me to use images and information from his Catalog of Olympic Labels on these web pages.

All text and images are the property of the author. Any errors are his.
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All text Copyright © 2013, William M. Senkus

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Created -- 07/27/2013
Revised -- 04/22/2022