When Did The Boston Marathon Happen

The Boston Marathon, one of the most prestigious and historic races in the world, holds a special place in my heart. As an avid runner and a fan of the sport, I have always been captivated by the rich history and incredible feats achieved in this iconic race. So, when did the Boston Marathon happen? Let’s dive deep into the past and explore the origins and evolution of this renowned event.

The Beginning of a Legacy

The Boston Marathon had its humble beginnings on April 19, 1897. Inspired by the marathon race at the first modern Olympic Games in 1896, John Graham, a member of the Boston Athletic Association (BAA), organized the inaugural Boston Marathon. The race initially covered a distance of 24.5 miles, starting in Ashland and finishing at the Boston Athletic Association’s club house in Copley Square.

This grueling race immediately captured the attention of runners across the globe. Fifteen participants stood at the starting line, and John J. McDermott became the first champion to conquer the challenging course, finishing in a time of 2 hours, 55 minutes, and 10 seconds.

Evolution and Challenges

Over the years, the Boston Marathon evolved to become the world-renowned event it is today. In 1908, the course was officially lengthened to the full marathon distance of 26.2 miles, conforming to the Olympic standard. The race also shifted its start time from the afternoon to the morning, allowing for better visibility and cooler temperatures.

However, it wasn’t always smooth sailing for the Boston Marathon. In 1967, Kathrine Switzer made history by becoming the first woman to officially register and complete the race, despite attempts to physically remove her from the course. Her resilience and determination paved the way for women’s participation in the race, and in 1972, the Boston Marathon officially allowed female runners.

A Day of Triumph and Tragedy: April 15, 2013

In recent years, the Boston Marathon faced a devastating tragedy. On April 15, 2013, two explosions occurred near the finish line, causing widespread chaos and claiming the lives of three people, with many others injured. It was a day that shook the running community to its core.

However, in the face of this tragedy, the spirit of the Boston Marathon and the strength of the running community prevailed. The following year, the marathon returned stronger than ever, with an outpouring of support from around the world. The slogan “Boston Strong” encapsulated the resilience and unity of the city, and the race became a symbol of hope and determination.

A New Chapter: The Future of the Boston Marathon

As the years have passed, the Boston Marathon has continued to attract elite athletes from all corners of the globe, as well as thousands of dedicated amateur runners who strive to qualify and experience the race firsthand. The route takes competitors through picturesque New England towns, showcasing the rich history and vibrant spirit of the region.

In recent times, the race has also embraced technology and innovation. The Boston Marathon introduced a wave start and qualifying time standards to manage the large number of participants. Additionally, new medical advancements and safety measures have been implemented to ensure the well-being of all participants.


The Boston Marathon is not just a race; it is a celebration of human achievement, perseverance, and community. From its humble beginnings to its significant moments in history, this iconic event has stood the test of time and continues to inspire runners worldwide.

So, the next time you lace up your running shoes or cheer from the sidelines, remember the history and legacy of the Boston Marathon. It is a testament to the power of the human spirit and the endless possibilities that lie within each and every one of us.