While black athletes now dominate many Olympic events, few participated at the time George Coleman became the first African American to stand on the medal podium. In 1904, the track and field athlete won a bronze in the 400-metre hurdle and another in the 200-metre low hurdle events in St. Louis. Poage was born in Missouri and was an accomplished scholar, graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in history. There, he ran varsity track after breaking the state’s 50-yard record during his senior year at high school. The third games of the modern Olympics were held in conjunction with the World’s Fair and many black athletes stayed away to protest racial segregation at the Fair. Fellow African American Joseph Stadler also chose to participate and won a silver medal in the standing high jump.