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The United States is the 1st country to win 1,000 Summer Olympic gold medals

That's a lot of gold.

Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports

The United States has made Olympic history in Rio by becoming the first nation to win 1,000 gold medals in the Summer Games. The team entered this year with 977 medals since the first Olympics in 1896 and has now won 23 medals in Rio to reach the incredible milestone.

The medal that got the United States there came in swimming, courtesy of the women's team in the 4x100-meter relay. Earlier Saturday, the United States got gold from its dynastic women's 8 rowing team.

The celebration is not without controversy, however. While the United States Olympic Committee officially says that the team entered the 2016 Olympics with 977 medals, there's some reason to dispute that. Bill Mallon, official Olympic historian, and Gracenote, an international sports data company, had disagreed on the exact number of medals the U.S. had won.

The dispute centered on two medals won by Julius Lenhart, an Austrian man, at the 1904 Olympics in St. Louis. Those Games are well known for being poorly organized and only loosely meeting the definition of the Olympics -- at the time, clubs from different nations competed instead of the nations themselves -- but medals won that year are still included in the official count.

Mallon and Gracenote disagreed on whether Lenhart's medals should be attributed to the Americans. Eventually, they decided to include one of Lenhart's medals, which he won as part of an American club, and to exclude an individual medal that he won. That's how they settled on the 977 figure, and entering Rio, the USOC decided to make that the official number. Now the country has hit 1,000 golds.

It's been a fantastic showing in the 2016 Olympics for Team USA, which currently has 23 gold medals and 59 overall medals. The swimming team has been especially dominant, with Michael Phelps and Katie Ledecky leading the way.

In Olympic history, nobody comes close to the U.S. in medals. Entering Rio, the U.S. had 977 golds and 2,399 medals overall. If you combine the totals of Russia, the Soviet Union and the Unified team that competed in 1992, they entered this year in second place with 572 golds and 1,517 medals overall. Only four other countries (Great Britain, France, Italy, China) have passed 200 golds.

The most successful Olympics for the United States in terms of gold medals was 1984, when the Soviet Union boycotted the Games in Los Angeles. Without the Eastern Bloc's huge contingent of athletes, the Americans dominated a thinner field en route to 83 golds and 174 total medals.

In terms of total medals, the 1904 Olympics was Team USA's best. The first Olympics held outside Europe, it wasn't nearly as organized and only 12 nations were represented. As a result, the 526 American athletes wrecked the competition, winning 78 gold medals and 239 medals overall.

Beyond the unique circumstances of those two Olympics, the Americans have had most of their best showings recently. The team had 46 golds in London -- its best total ever excluding 1904 and 1984 -- and topped 100 overall medals for the fifth time in six Olympics. Now with things going well in Rio, the U.S. is showing it will continue to be one of the leaders in international sports even as more countries get involved. Even if that 1,000 gold medal figure might actually be 999 or 1,001.