Since the dawn of civilization we humans have run around hitting things, kicking things or chasing each other. But when did games become sports and the multi-million dollar industry it is today? Here is a timeline of our favorite sports.
776 B.C. – The Olympics start with one running event but expand over the next 400 years to include boxing, wrestling, chariot racing, discus, javelin and long jump.
490 B.C. – Greek soldier, Pheidippedes runs 25 miles from Marathon to Athens to announce a victory in battle, then collapses and dies.
1424 – Variations of soccer have been played for centuries but the first instance of the word “football,” appears on a statue in this year in Scotland banning the game.
1530 – Though played since the 12th Century, tennis becomes more popular when King Henry VIII constructs a tennis court at Hampton Court Palace.
1744 – The first mention of “baseball” appears in A Pretty Little Pocket Book referring to the sport of rounders.
1744 – Though many nations claim to have invented the sport prior to the 1200s, the oldest surviving rules for golf come from Edinburgh, Scotland.
1830 – The first professional wrestling circuit is introduced in France with competitors nicknamed “bone wrecker” and “steel eater.”
1836 – Football Association in England becomes the first governing body of what Westerners now refer to as soccer.
1846 – A baseball game played on June 19, 1846 is played in Hoboken, New Jersey using “New York Rules.”
1860 – First official British Open is held.
1869 – The Cincinnati Red Stockings, the oldest MLB team, is formed.
1876 – The National League is formed.
1877 – The first Wimbledon is held. The U.S. Open holds its first championship four years later.