The 1948 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XIV Olympiad, were an international multi-sport event which was held in London, England, United Kingdom. After a 12-year hiatus because of World War II, these were the first Summer Olympics since the 1936 Games in Berlin. The 1940 Games had been scheduled for Tokyo, and then for Helsinki; the 1944 Games had been provisionally planned for London. This was the second occasion that London had hosted the Olympic Games, having previously been the venue in 1908. The Olympics again returned to London in 2012, making it the only city to host the games three times. The event came to be known as the Austerity Games because of the economic climate and post-war rationing. No new venues were built for the games, and athletes were housed in existing accommodation instead of an Olympic Village. A record 59 nations were represented by 4,104 athletes, 3,714 men and 390 women, in 19 sport disciplines. Because of their roles as aggressors in World War II, Germany and Japan were not invited to participate; the USSR were invited but chose not to send any athletes. The United States team won the most total medals, 84, and the most gold medals, 38. The host nation won 23 medals, three of them gold. One of the star performers at the Games was Dutch sprinter Fanny Blankers-Koen. Dubbed "The Flying Housewife", the 30-year-old mother of two won four gold medals in athletics. In the decathlon, American Bob Mathias became the youngest male ever to win an Olympic gold medal at the age of 17. The most individual medals were won by Veikko Huhtanen of Finland who took three golds, a silver and a bronze in men's gymnastics. These Olympics were the first to be broadcast o
television. Election as host city In June 1939, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) awarded the 1944 Olympic Summer Games to London, ahead of Rome, Detroit, Budapest, Lausanne, Helsinki, Montreal and Athens. World War II stopped the plans and the Games were cancelled so London again stood as a candidate for 1948. Britain almost handed the 1948 games to the USA due to post-war financial and rationing problems, but George VI said that this could be the chance to restore Britain from World War II. The official report of the London Olympics shows that there was no case of London being pressed to run the Games against its will. It says: The Games of 1944 had been allocated to London and so it was that in October 1945, the chairman of the British Olympic Council, Lord Burghley, went to Stockholm and saw the president of the International Olympic Committee to discuss the question of London being chosen for this great event. As a result, an investigating committee was set up by the British Olympic Council to work out in some detail the possibility of holding the Games. After several meetings they recommended to the council that the Lord Mayor of London should be invited to apply for the allocation of the Games in 1948. In March 1946 the IOC, through a postal vote, gave the summer Games to London and the winter competition to St Moritz. London was selected ahead of Baltimore, Minneapolis, Lausanne, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia. London, which had previously hosted the 1908 Summer Olympics, became the second city to host the Olympics twice; Paris hosted the event in 1900 and 1924. It became the first city to host the Olympics for the third time when London hosted the 2012 Summer Olympics.