Watch the Evolution of the Winter Olympics' Opening CeremonyTrack the parade of nations' 86-year progression from Chamonix, France to Vancouver, Canada
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Chamonix, France (1924)
Beginning in 1924 (and until 1992, when the scheduling pattern changed), the Winter Games were held in the cold weather months preceeding the Summer contests. Watch at left as 247 men and 11 women competing in six sports parade the Stade Olympique de Chamonix, a 45,000-seat equestrian venue. While the '24 Games were successful, they were also fairly predictable: Norway took home 17 of a possible 49 medals (and 11 of the 12 skiing awards). France nabbed just three medals, the first time in the history of the modern games (after 1896) that the host nation failed to win gold. Faring only slightly better, the United States nabbed four medals, good enough for fifth out of 16 competing nations (six of which earned no medals). Also of note: Chamonix was the second of five games held in France through the years, the others being the 1900 and 1924 Summer Games (both in Paris), the 1968 Winter Games (held in Grenoble, two hours southwest of Chamonix) and the Winter Games again in 1992 (hosted by Albertville, located in-between the two cities).