Early Days of Golf This Week at LiveAuctionTalk.com Rosemary McKittrick is a storyteller. Her weekly column provides in depth coverage of the auction market. The website is packed with useful information.
News-Antique.com - Jun 13,2010 - Old Tom Morris liked to tell the story of the first British Open in 1860. It seems eight players showed up to play golf. One had spent the previous night in jail nursing a hangover. Several other golfers signed the register with an “X” because they couldn’t read or write.
A motley crew, the golf host ended up handing out matching checkered jackets for the group to play in. They looked more like lumberjacks than golfers.
Tom came in second at the first British Open behind Willie Park. Park was a local who grew up swinging a golf club carved out of a tree branch. Tom followed up his loss by sweeping the Open in 1861, 1862, 1864, and 1867.
It was Old Tom Morris who modernized the game. He moved golf from bumpy pastures to smooth green courses with 18 holes.
On Feb 18, PBA Galleries, San Francisco, featured the famous photograph of Tom Morris in a bunker at the St. Andrews Links in Scotland in its Fine & Rare Golf Books auction. The circa 1900, 12 inch by 9 ¾ inch, photogravure from the Library of John M. McClelland Jr. sold in the sale.
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