Hosted in 1890 by philanthropist Stephen Steel and the president of the United States, The Steel Ball Run was a horse race that spanned from one corner of the United States to another.
The race began on September 25th 1890 at 10 AM on San Diego beach, and ended on January 19th, 1891 in New York City. The total distance was estimated at around 6000 km, made up by several stages separated by known landmarks – the first of which was the Grand Hotel Casa Libertad.
Winning first and second place were Australian brothers Glenn and Dante Frey (respectively), winning a combined total of $51,000,00. In third place was British horse jokey Diego Brando, winning $500,000. The Frey brothers used their money to purchase a large share of the Speedwagon Oil Company, and Diego invested his prize money in various organizations.
A flier promoting the race from Japan. The race was well-known and advertised globally, and had racers from dozens of countries.