Schwartz, Al : Jews In Sports @ Virtual Museum

Schwartz, Al

Albert Schwartz


Country Represented:
United States

Years Competed:

Medals Received:

Olympic Info:
Schwartz was a member of the United States swimming team at the 1932 Los Angeles Olympics and competed in the 100-meter freestyle. After finishing second in his preliminary heat with a time of 59.6 seconds, he qualified for the final by finishing in 59.2 in the semifinals. The final went down to the wire. Schwartz finished third and won the bronze with a time of 58.8, only 0.6 behind the gold medalist and 0.2 behind the silver medalist (both Japanese).

Career Highlights:
A terrific swimmer in high school, Schwartz became involved in the sport at the Chicago Jewish People's Institute Community Center. He developed into one of America's dominant swimmers at the Illinois Athletic Club under the tutelage of legendary coach Bill Bachrach.

While at Northwestern University, Schwartz was a three-time All-America (1928-30) in various freestyle events, and set numerous collegiate records. In 1929, he was the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) champion in the 100-yard freestyle (53.2), and a member of the 330-yard medley relay team that won the NCAA title. In 1930, Schwartz won all three short-distance freestyle events at the NCAA Championships. He won the 50-yard (24.0), the 100-yard (55.0), and the 220-yard (2:16.6). His three NCAA titles in 1930 is tied for first all-time by a single swimmer in a single year, and he was the first swimmer to ever accomplish the feat.

In 1931, Schwartz won the 100-yard (53.7) and the 220-yard (2:16.2) at the AAU (Amateur Athletic Union) indoor championships. He was also a terrific water polo player and was a member of the Illinois Athletic Club's national indoor championship water polo teams in 1930, 1932-34, and 1939-40.

Birth and Death Dates:
b. Dec. 21, 1907

Chicago, Ilinois

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encyclopedia of JEWS in sports, by Bernard Postal, Jesse Silver, and Roy Silver (New York: Bloch Publishing Co., 1965)