Originally Posted by TitanCT
uhm...the russians were the first to use them in the olympics (a.k.a. organized popular sports)
steroids have been synthesized since the 1930s and maybe earlier...
Yes, you are right. The first steroid was synthesized in 1931 in Marburg, Germany, for which the scientist was awarded a Nobel prize (and made to decline the prize by the Nazi government).
on human beings started in 1937. Apparently, Hitler had himself injected with testosterone derivatives during the World War (according to his physicians).
In United States, IIRC, the first known research on steroids started in 1954, resulting in the discovery of methandrostenolone which was marketed as dianabol. Ziegler, I think, was the person who pioneered steroid use among American athletes, and he was definitely after Reeves era.
This makes it unlikely for any American bodybuilder to know the effective usage for these chemicals as early as late 1940s - 1950 (Reeves's competitive career). If they did, it would take considerable ingenuity, knowledge and enterprise for them to get hold of steroids and use them.