ROME - Italy
Rome was to have organised the 1908 games but withdrew in favour of London. An earthquake had just struck southern Italy, and the money allocated to organised the games was used for rebuilding.The Eternal city finally hosted the Olympic games in 1960, after Italy had organised the winter games at Cortina d'Ampezzo in 1956.The Rome games took place when the Korean war was over, and the two Koreas were invited to come to Rome under a single banner. North Korea refused, and was not to rejoin the Olympic family until 1972.It was for the Rome games that Eurovision was created, enabling the games to be broadcast live. Rome set another record: the figure of 5000 athletes who took part.These games consecrated two exceptional champions: the American Wilma Rudolph, the first athlete to win three gold medals in the same games, and the Ethiopian Abebe Bikila, who won the marathon barefoot.