Book Review – C.C. Pyle’s First Annual International Transcontinental Foot Race, From Los Angeles to New York

I just started reading a clever tale about the first foot race from Los Angeles to New York. By numbers alone it is an amazing story.

  • 3422 miles
  • Seven days a week, often logging two to three marathons a day
  • 199 runners at the start
  • The year: 1928

Running across the country today seems crazy, but in 1928!!

As the author of the book notes, highways were a new concept. They were running on the hardly known, brand new Route 66. Shoes were terrible. In fact, shoe companies were making profit on foot remedies for “the enormous amount of human suffering that has been caused by boots and shoes.” And knowledge about endurance sports was limited, to say the least.

Yet these men — they were all men — decided to embark on the adventure. Some were true athletes, but many were not. Most did it for the prize money, $25,000 for the winner.

Regardless of why they did it or where they came from, they were true if unknowing pioneers of endurance sport.

The book is “C.C. Pyle’s Amazing Foot Race: The True Story of the 1928 Coast-to-Coast Run Across America,” by Geoff Williams. I am only a few chapters in and I’ll let you know what I think of it when I am done.

Speaking of books, there is a great program called “BookCrossing” that facilitates the sharing of books around the world. If you have bookshelf after bookshelf of read books at your home, I recommend you check it out.

On another note, Happy Father’s Day to my husband, Robert, and my own daddy, Edward. Happy Father’s Day to the dad’s I run with and the dad’s I know who run: Lynn, Kevin, Allan, Lang and David.


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