Bluethenthal, Arthur "Bluey" : Jews In Sports @ Virtual Museum

Bluethenthal, Arthur "Bluey"

A legendary lineman at Princeton University (at only 5'9"), Arthur was such a great football player that he was a consensus first-team All-East in 28 newspapers. Following his graduation from Princeton University in 1912, Bluethenthal became the line coach first for the Tigers, then at the University of North Carolina.

In 1916, a year before the United States entered World War I, Bluey joined the French Foreign Legion and served at the Battle of Verdun with the French 129th Infantry Division. He was awarded France's Croix de Guerre with Star for bravery. On June 1, 1917, he joined the French flying corps and was killed in battle, and France posthumously awarded him a second Croix de Guerre, with Palm. He also received the Medalle Militaire. The airport in Wilmington, North Carolina, is named in his honor. He was a member of Wilmington's Temple Israel, the first synagogue established in North Carolina.

In June 1918, a tribute to Bluethenthal by Captain Hugh Alwyn Inness-Brown appeared in the Paris Herald. It said, "In the death of Arthur Bluethenthal, killed in an aerial battle some days ago, France and America lost one of their staunchest patriots. To come to death alone, high in the air, with no friend to tell the story of the struggle and to be buried in a lonely spot near the front, unofficially, with little publicity, would have been the fate that Bluethenthal would have desired, could he have chosen. At all times, he shunned being considered a hero, and when a friend said to him jokingly that his fear of publicity amounted to conceit, he replied, 'Conceit it may be, but I've always taken serving France so seriously that I hardly ever want to talk about it.'"

Birth and Death Dates:
b. November 1, 1891 - d. June 5, 1918

Career Highlights:
In the early days of football, one player could carry a team to success and Bluethenthal was Princeton's great player. In 1911, he was named first team All-America by numerous newspapers, Walter Camp second team All-America, and first team All-East in a consensus of 28 newspapers. That year, the Tigers were 8-0-2 and yielded only 15 points all year. Against Yale, Princeton failed to make a first down but won the game, 6-3. In 1912, Walter Camp selected him for third team All-America. Bluethenthal is a member of the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame.

Wilmington, North Carolina

Career Dates:
Bluethenthal played center at Princeton University from 1910-1912.

Physical description:
5'9", 186-pounds

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