Welcome to OLYMPIAN ARTIFACTS!
At 7,000 ft. on Mt. Allan (at Nakiska), just above the start house for the men's downhill at the XV Olympic Winter Games in Calgary in 1988.
Due to the untimely death of Craig and at the request of his sisters, this site has been converted from a commercial / informational site to a historical / informational site in his memory. This site is the culmination of Craig’s 41 years of collecting Olympic Memorabilia. What started with the casual purchase of a single logo pin at the Games of the XXI Olympiad in Montreal in 1976 grew into a very large and diverse collection of which he was extremely proud. There is a tremendous amount of material available -- even for the most discerning among you.
Craig tried to incorporate a lot of useful information into this site. Some of it is subtle, and some is not so subtle, but it's all here, and it won't cost you anything to use it. Hopefully you will learn just a little bit more about a particular Olympic item, the Olympic Games, or the Olympic Movement each time you visit this site.
OLYMPIAN ARTIFACTS is a work in progress which is constantly enlarging and improving. Your suggestions are always welcome.
Craig tried to provide as much detail in his descriptions as he thought was necessary for a particular item.
As they pertain to badges and pins, words like "Gold", "Silver", "Bronze", or "Brass" simply refer to the color of the base metal. Actual colors used on a given badge or pin are generally only mentioned where they help to differentiate similar badges or pins from each other. Backstamps are described with the same purpose in mind, and without the inclusion of phone or FAX numbers. In the case of BID pins, sometimes the differences between certain examples consisted of only minor variations in color or backstamp, so it is up to you to decide how significant these are. The term "tack back" refers to a standard-length post requiring a typical butterfly or military clutch. The phrase "clutch back" means that the post is longer and requires a tie-tack type of clutch to fasten it. And, where there is verifiable information, the quantity made is noted.
For the other kinds of items listed on this site, you'll find the descriptions to be complete and self-explanatory. With this in mind, information such as titles, number of pages, languages used, dimensions, condition, and anything else that would be helpful is included.
To assist collectors in determining the ease in finding items, this index should be used as a guide only and do not represent the actual value of an item. The level of scarcity codes for bid pins on this site are based on one collectors opinion. The codes for NOC pins are from www.olympicnocpins.com when available. Codes are as follows:
Almost Always Available
Often Seen, Usually Available
Seen Occasionally, Sometimes Available
Virtually Never Available
Collector Should Use Own Judgement
LINKS TO LISTS
Although OLYMPIAN ARTIFACTS has several other links besides this one, the 7 links described below access the primary lists on the site. Click-on buttons are provided as well as a daily update on the number of items in each. Before accessing any one of them, it is suggested you read the following brief summaries. These will provide you with an overview of what you can expect to see on each of these pages and how they are organized.
SUMMER GAMES ARTIFACTS
This link currently contains 4788 items in 20 categories.
WINTER GAMES ARTIFACTS
This link currently contains 2415 items in the same 20 categories.
You'll see a list of 20 categories in alphabetical order when you first access the above pages and clicking on any one of them will open that category. Items within each category are listed in chronological and alphabetical order according to city of origin. And, in the cases of IOC items which aren't necessarily Games specific, you'll see them on both lists.
SUMMER GAMES BID PINS
This link currently contains 1101 items spanning the years 1956 to 2028.
WINTER GAMES BID PINS
This link currently contains 764 items spanning the years 1956 to 2026.
You'll be greeted by a list of the above Olympic years when you access these pages and clicking on any given year will open the page for that year. Once again, this will be followed by descriptions in chronological and alphabetical order according to city of origin. And, there will also be a bronze button you can click on which will allow you to view the image of a given pin.
SUMMER GAMES NOC PINS
This link currently contains 1889 items spanning the years 1924 to 2012. Going forward this category will not be updated. Please visit the most comprehensive reference site for NOC pins at http://www.olympicnocpins.com.
WINTER GAMES NOC PINS
This link currently contains 663 items spanning the years 1924 to 2010. Going forward this category will not be updated. Please visit the most comprehensive reference site for NOC pins at http://www.olympicnocpins.com.
The format here is the same as that for the BID PINS. When you access these pages, you'll see a list of the above Olympic years and clicking on any given year will open the page for that year. This will be followed by descriptions in alphabetical order according to country of origin, and each country will be followed by its three-letter IOC abbreviation. There will also be a bronze button you can click on which will allow you to view the image of a particular pin. Generic NOC pins which I believe were used at both the Summer and Winter Games in the same year appear on both lists for that year.
This link contains a list of the items added to the site within the last 30 days. Each "New Item" is also identified with a "New" graphic located to the left of the item number on its respective sales list.
For those of you not familiar with them, BID PINS are produced by cities bidding for the right to host the Olympic Games. They're used as promotional items and have become increasingly popular and numerous in recent years. Although the first listed bid pin on the site dates from 1960, it's presently unclear as to when the first actual bid pin was made. However, with the discovery and exchange of information this site will hopefully stimulate, perhaps that issue will eventually be resolved.
There are pins that have been deliberately not listed due to unconfirmed origins or which have been found not to have been produced for a specific bid by either a national or international bid city.
For those of you who collect BID PINS, I urge you to contact this site with verifiable information about any you may have or know about which aren't described or pictured on this site. If you're able to send detailed descriptions and high-quality color photocopies or images in ".jpg" format, please do so. If included, your contribution(s) will be acknowledged in this section. Only in this way, can a truly comprehensive and accurate listing of all BID PINS eventually evolve.
Information used to create the BID PINS lists are made possible by individuals loaning pins to scan or by providing information, color photocopies, and/or ".jpg" scans. The efforts of those listed here are much appreciated. Robert Sawyer (Atlanta, GA), Rick Holman (Smithfield, KY), Mike Nealon (No. Hollywood, CA), Len Braun (Downey, CA), Sid Marantz (Vernon, CA), John Cobb (Atlanta, GA), Doug Todd (San Diego, CA), Steve Robie (Cupertino, CA), Jim Greensfelder (Cincinnati, OH), and Ron Finnigan (Burlington, ON, CANADA) all deserve special praise. Hugh Hofer (Roswell, GA), Josh Jackson (Atlanta, GA), Richard Jackson, Sr. (Alpharetta, GA), Alan Peterson (Las Vegas, NV), Mario Avila (Atlanta, GA), Richard Murray (Ontario, CA), Jim Goddard (Denver, CO), Colleen Simpson (Los Angeles, CA), Domenico Di Pinto (Trieste, ITALY), Morissa Pawl (West Hills, CA), Stuart Garmise (Flushing, NY), Irene Darveau (Quebec City, QC, CANADA), Dan Pederson (Abbotsford, BC, CANADA), Geir Silseth (Lillehammer, NORWAY), Antoan Hlebarov (Sofia, BULGARIA), and Jivko Nakev (Sofia, BULGARIA) contributed some real rarities as well. Appreciation also extends to Mike Yazdani (Sydney, NSW, AUSTRALIA) who supplied the production numbers for many of the Sydney '00 bid pins. And, finally, Milos Kubalcik (Jindalee, QLD, AUSTRALIA) for helping clarify the status of those pins from the village of Strbské Pleso in the "Vysoké Tatry" ("High Tatras") region of Slovakia and for also providing some important information about many of the Poprad-Tatry '02 and Poprad-Tatry '06 bid pins.
National Olympic Committee or NOC pins were not really seen at the Olympic Games until 1908 in London. In fact, there were very few of them at that time, and they were generally exchanged only between athletes from different countries. This was pretty much the case until the 1960s and 1970s when their numbers greatly increased.
At the 1980 Olympic Winter Games in Lake Placid, NOC pins were finally discovered by "the masses". Main Street was turned into a pedestrian mall and spectators to those Games freely mingled and traded with athletes, officials, members of the press, and anyone else who was fortunate enough to possess these little treasures.
During the rest of the 1980s, NOC pins became extremely popular with the collecting public. In fact, knowledgeable and resourceful collectors besieged NOC offices around the world with letters requesting pins, and were often able to acquire them in this way at little or no cost.
Today, NOC pins have become a major source of revenue for many National Olympic Committees. As a result, they have also become "big business" and are now produced in much greater quantities for the benefit of the collecting public. In fact, at the Centennial Olympic Games in Atlanta, a few NOCs had as many as 10 to 20 different pins which made trying to collect all of them a rather formidable task. Apparently, this trend will continue in Sydney and beyond. My fear is that the commercialization and proliferation of NOC pins may ultimately discourage many people from continuing to collect them, and if this, in fact, happens, it would be a real shame, indeed. Please visit the most comprehensive reference site for NOC pins at http://www.olympicnocpins.com.
With 1994 Olympic speedskating gold medalist, Dan Jansen (USA), at Rich's Department Store in Atlanta to celebrate the introduction of a special Swatch Watch collection on 19 July 1995.
In certain cases on several of the lists, it was necessary to show a particular item's obverse (front) and reverse (back). This was accomplished with the use of a "View Reverse" link which is located inside the item's "pop-up" window and below its description. Clicking on the "View Reverse" link will close the first "pop-up" window and open another one in its place which reveals the image's reverse (back). At the bottom of this new window and, again, below the item's description, clicking on the "View Front" link will return you to the previous image.
Kyle Whelliston (Philadelphia, PA) designed this site, and gave everything that was asked for -- and more. He's an extremely gifted and talented young man, and a real web "master" in every sense of the word. I believe his graphic and technical expertise is rivaled by very few.
Here's hoping you enjoy OLYMPIAN ARTIFACTS and come back often!