Jan York Romary
Born in Palo Alto, Jan was the first woman to compete in six Olympic Games
Ralph Faulkner and Polly Craus
Two-time Olympian Faulkner coached Polly Craus to a National title and an Olympic berth
Sal Giambra, Emily Romaine, Hans Halberstadt, Helene Mayer, Bunny Fratessa
Clubmates in Germany in the 1920s, Hans and Helene reunited in San Francisco at Halberstadt Fencers Club
After experiencing San Francisco’s Summer of Love, in 1967 Michael became the coach at Halberstadt Fencers Club
György Piller and Gerard Biagini
At the Fairmont Hotel in 1958, Piller demonstrates a foil lesson with San Francisco native Biagini
Fencing Master at UC Santa Cruz, member of a team that won gold at the World Master’s Championships
Preserving Fencing History
The passion for fencing history you’ll find reflected here on the West Coast Fencing Archive can be traced to the legacy of Charles Selberg.
An exceptional teacher and storyteller, Charlie brought fencing history to life for his students through his vivid tales of great fencers and famous bouts.
His estate, filled with posters, photos, scrapbooks and other fencing memorabilia, became the initial collection for the Archive. Since then, we have incorporated sixty more collections and counting.
The Latest Story
It’s an interesting time for fencing coaches and clubs, as everyone tries to grapple with maintaining some level of instruction for their students during a global pandemic. The reach of technology in our lives today makes it easy to deliver, but that wasn’t always the case.
Other Tales from the Archive
In attempting to self-analyze why writing about Hans is so enjoyable for me, the only thing I come up with is that in almost every group photo of him I’ve seen, he appears to be having the best time.
I’ve used The Fencer magazine as a source previously. It was a 2-plus year endeavor by a number of fencers from Northern and Southern California to share results and writings about their sport.
It’s a holiday weekend around here, so I won’t write much. I just thought it might be nice to show a couple more bouts from the ’79 Junior Worlds, recorded on video by Len Carnighan. If you missed the first story, it’s here:...
The truth is, I’ve been saving this one. Not for any particular reason, but this competition holds a great deal of personal significance for me.
Here are some pictures of some of my favorite fencers that have come from France. Not in any order, other than the order by which I came across them. Christian d’Oriola Baron Pierre de Coubertin, founder of the modern Olympic movement. Pascal Jolyot Jean Buhan...
Thus, back in time we go to the Halberstadt School of Fencing – which is how the sign read that was painted on the door in gold letters at 3145 Fillmore Street in San Francisco.
The Last Captain
FEATURE LENGTH FENCING DOCUMENTARY
For fifty years, the Hungarian National Sabre team had two constants: they took home gold in every tournament they entered and they had George Piller.
This is the story of Jekelfalussy (Piller) Gyorgy, the 1932 Olympic Sabre champion who defected to the United States during the 1956 Olympics in Melbourne.
By Doug Nichols and Greg Lynch
Meet the Fencers
Meet the Fencing Masters
Have something to share or add? Our goal is to capture the stories we know are out there. Plus photos, videos, home movies, posters—you name it. All this material helps preserve the stories of West Coast fencing.
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