Hall of Fame Class of 1974
Information submitted in a nomination letter to the U.S. National Ski Hall of Fame by Enzo Serafini.
Strand Mikkelsen was a top ski jumper in Norway, winning many prestigious events all over Europe. He immigrated to Canada in 1924 and became a professional in the United States in 1934 where he founded the Eastern Professional Ski Association.
Strand H. Mikkelsen was born November 3, 1904 in Kongsberg, Norway. He won his first ski trophy at the age of eight. When he was 17, he finished second in an open jumping competition in a national meet on Gusta Ski Hill, Gaitus, Norway with a jump of 46 meters, nine meters off the world’s record at the time.
Strand came from a famous Norwegian skiing family. He and three brothers were the pride of Kongsberg. His brother, Roy Mikkelsen, was an Honored Member of the U.S National Ski Hall of Fame, member of the Auburn Ski Club in California, a National Ski Jumping Champion in 1953 and 1955 and a top alpine competitor. Halvor Mikkelsen, also of Auburn, was a Nordic combined champion and alpine competitor of the Far West Ski Association. Olav Mikkelsen of Kongsberg was a top-rated competitor for the Kongsberg Ski Club and a highlight of his career came in 1952 when he carried the Olympic Torch through the Kongsberg region of Telemark toward the Winter Games site in Oslo.
After winning prizes in many European tournaments, Strand Mikkelsen immigrated to Canada in 1924. He won the Canadian Western Championship in 1926 and 1927 and the United States National title at Brattleboro, Vermont in 1929. Also in 1929, he won the Swedish Ski Club Tournament at Bear Mt., New York, placed second in the USEASA Championships at Rumford, Maine, won the U.S. National Jump title and set a hill record in international ski championships at Lake Placid, New York.
Mikkelsen moved to Greenfield, Massachusetts in 1929 where he operated a ski shop and became a ski instructor at Greenfield’s Weldon Hotel.
During the Olympic trials of 1932 at Greenfield he broke a ski at the end of a jump and broke the 179-foot record on one ski.
Strand Mikkelsen became a professional in 1934 and was the founder of the Eastern Professional Ski Association. While he was president, his association sponsored indoor meets at Boston and in New York City’s Madison Square Garden.
At Ecker Hill, Salt Lake City, Utah in 1934, he made the longest jump of 257 feet. At this period in time he was considered the leading ski jumper in the United States.
Mikkelsen moved to Worcester, Massachusetts in 1951 and operated a ski shop at Mt. Wachusett, Princeton. He became a member of the Scandinavian Ski Club of Worcester.
He was a veteran of World War II, serving in the army.
Mikkelsen accomplished many things to further skiing in the United States. He died on February 6, 1964.
Strand Mikkelsen was elected to the U.S. National Ski Hall of Fame in 1974.
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