The Boston Marathon has been held every Patriot’s Day since 1897.
John Graham, a Boston Athletic Association member and inaugural U.S. Olympic Team manager, was inspired by the 1896 Olympic Marathon to organize one in the Boston area.
The path originally measured 24.5 miles from Ashland to Boston. In 1924, race organizers relocated the starting line to Hopkinton, lengthening the distance to 26.2 miles.
The first race consisted of 15 contestants. Currently about 30,000 registered participants around the globe train for the world’s oldest annual marathon. Follow the April 16 race on social media at #Boston2018.