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Anderson, Willie (1878?–25 October 1910), golfer, was born William Anderson in North Berwick, Scotland, the son of Tom Anderson, a golf greenskeeper. (His mother’s name is unknown.) His birth year has appeared as 1878 and 1880; most obituaries list his age as 30 at his death. Anderson grew up in North Berwick, spending much of his youth on the golf course of the club where his father was employed. He never worked as a caddie but focused on playing golf and learning the required skills. He came to the United States in 1894 when golf was being introduced as a recreation and sport. In his first tournament, the U.S. Open in 1897, he finished one stroke behind the winner, Joe Lloyd. He also fared well in the 1898 and 1899 opens, finishing third and fifth....

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Armour, Tommy (24 September 1895–11 September 1968), professional golfer, was born Thomas Dickson Armour in Edinburgh, Scotland, the son of George Armour, a confectioner. His mother’s name is unknown. His father died when Armour was four. Armour’s older brother, Sandy, took the young child to a golf course adjacent to their house and introduced him to the game of golf. As an adolescent, Armour caddied for Sandy as he won the Scottish Amateur championship. After entering Stewart’s College in Edinburgh, Armour graduated from the University of Edinburgh in 1914....

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Tom Armour. Defeating Harry Cooper to win the U.S. golf title. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-108418).

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Barnes, James Martin (08 April 1886–25 May 1966), professional golfer, was born in Lelant, Cornwall, England. His parents’ names are unknown. As a boy he was an apprentice and then assistant professional golfer at the West Cornwall Golf Club. He immigrated to the United States in 1906 and took up residence in San Francisco. Later he became a naturalized citizen, although he frequently returned to his homeland to play in the British Open championship....

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Demaret, Jimmy (24 May 1910–28 December 1983), professional golfer, was born James Newton Demaret in Houston, Texas, the son of John O’Brien Demaret, a carpenter; his mother’s name is unknown. He grew up in Houston, began caddying at the age of eight, and won his first competitive tournament three years later in 1923. Demaret completed two years of high school before starting his professional golf career. He married a redhead named Idella Adams, and the couple had a daughter....

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Diegel, Leo H. (27 April 1899–08 May 1951), professional golfer, was born in Detroit, Michigan, the son of William G. Diegel, an industrial worker, and Elizabeth Kebbe. As a ten-year-old parochial school student he began caddying and became something of a teenage phenomenon. At age thirteen he won the city caddy championship, and four years later, as an assistant professional at the Country Club of Detroit, he won the Michigan Open title. He rose to national prominence in 1920 when he tied for second place, behind Englishman Ted Ray, in the U.S. Open at Inverness Country Club in Toledo, Ohio. This event proved to be a turning point in American golf. It marked the end of British dominance in major tournaments and the emergence of American professionals such as Diegel, ...

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Chick Evans. [left to right] Frank Kellogg, Warren G. Harding, Chick Evans, and Henry P. Fletcher. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-96909).

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Evans, Chick (18 July 1890–06 November 1979), golfer, was born Charles Evans, Jr., in Indianapolis, Indiana, the son of Charles Evans, a librarian, and Mary (maiden name unknown). When Evans was three, the family moved to Chicago. After attending public schools there, he entered Northwestern University in 1909, completing two years of study before leaving because of financial problems....

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Ghezzi, Vic (19 October 1910–30 May 1976), professional golfer, was born Victor J. Ghezzi in Rumson, New Jersey, the son of Frank Ghezzi, a gardener, and Rose Zanelli. Ghezzi, who attended public schools in Red Bank, New Jersey, and graduated from Red Bank High School, followed a traditional path to a professional career. After first caddying at the Rumson Country Club, he worked in the pro shop and finally became the head professional....

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Guldahl, Ralph (22 November 1911–12 June 1987), professional golfer, was born in Dallas, Texas, the son of Olaf Guldahl and Anna Nordly, Norwegian immigrants. He became a caddy at the Lakewood Country Club at age eleven and then began playing regularly at the nine-hole Randall Park city course. In 1927 he captained the state champion Woodrow Wilson High School team and was also the individual interscholastic medalist with rounds of 65 and 71. He developed his game in the highly competitive atmosphere of the Tenison Park and Stevens Park public courses against Ray Mangrum, Gus Moreland, and other strong competition. He entered various Texas tournaments, whose fields included ...

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Walter Hagen, c. 1908–1914. Right, with a friend. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-100346).

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Hagen, Walter Charles (21 December 1892–05 October 1969), professional golfer, was born in Rochester, New York, the son of William Hagen, a blacksmith, and Louise Balko. Hagen grew up less than a mile from the Country Club of Rochester, in the Corbett’s Glen neighborhood of suburban Brighton. The proximity to a golf course was instrumental to Hagen’s early development. He began playing golf at age five; by the age of seven he was caddying for 10 cents an hour. Hagan quit attending school regularly at the age of 12, as he jumped out of a schoolroom window, headed for the golf course....

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Harrison, Dutch (29 March 1910–19 June 1982), professional golfer, was born Ernest Joseph Harrison in Conway, Arkansas, the son of David Harrison, a plantation overseer, and Tessia (maiden name unknown).

As a small child Harrison worked on the plantation at various chores. When his father took employment as a police officer in Little Rock, the family moved to a farm about fifty yards from the third hole of Little Rock Country Club. At age twelve Harrison began caddying at the club and at fifteen began to play regularly. Naturally left-handed, he became a right-handed player at the instruction of the club professional, Herman “Hack” Hackbarth. He won the Arkansas Amateur Championship in 1929 and turned professional in 1930....

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Ben Hogan Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-115558).

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Hogan, Ben (13 August 1912–25 July 1997), professional golfer, was born William Ben Hogan in Stephenville, Texas, the son of Chester Hogan, a blacksmith, and Clara Williams Hogan, a seamstress. When Hogan was nine, his father shot himself, a trauma that may have contributed to his subsequent reputation as a loner. His mother moved the family to Fort Worth after his father's death, and he and his two siblings worked to help her make ends meet. At age twelve he began caddying and developing his skills as a golfer. Three times—in 1930, 1931, and 1934—he tried to make it as a professional golfer and failed. In 1935 he married Valerie Fox, though his mother did not attend the wedding and never got along with his wife. They had no children....

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Hoyt, Beatrix (1880–14 August 1963), early golfer, was born in Westchester County, New York, the daughter of William Sprague Hoyt and Janet Ralston. She was the granddaughter of Salmon P. Chase, secretary of treasury in the Lincoln administration and later chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. Virtually no biographical information on Hoyt’s family or her childhood is available. Hoyt made her mark as the first prominent woman golfer in the United States when golf, in its infancy in the 1890s, was essentially a man’s game. She took her first lessons early in the 1890s at the Shinnecock Hills Club on Long Island from Willie Dunn, the Scottish architect and professional golfer who had laid out the twelve-hole course in 1889. Shinnecock was the first incorporated golf club in the nation, and with its opulent clubhouse as a hallmark it became a model for clubs springing up at Newport, Philadelphia, and elsewhere in the East....

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Bobby Jones Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-115398).

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Jones, Bobby (17 March 1902–18 December 1971), amateur golfer, was born Robert Tyre Jones, Jr., in Atlanta, Georgia, the son of Robert P. Jones, an attorney, and Clara Thomas. Jones received degrees in mechanical engineering from Georgia School (now Institute) of Technology in 1922 and from Harvard University in English literature in 1924. Within a month of his Harvard graduation, he married his high school sweetheart, Mary Malone; they had three children. After two years spent selling Florida real estate, he attended Emory University Law School in 1926–1927. He passed the state bar exams in 1927, and the following year he joined his father’s law firm....

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Macdonald, Charles Blair (14 November 1855–21 April 1939), amateur golfer and golf course designer, was born in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada, the son of Godfrey Macdonald, a wealthy Scottish-born merchant, and Mary Blakewell. He was raised in Chicago. Macdonald attended St. Andrews University in St. Andrews, Scotland, from 1872 to 1874. After returning to Chicago in September 1874, he worked as a stockbroker and became a member of the Chicago Board of Trade. In 1884 he married Frances Porter; they had two daughters. The family moved to Garden City, New York, in 1900, when Macdonald became a partner in the brokerage firm of C. D. Barney & Co....

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Mangrum, Lloyd Eugene (01 August 1914–17 November 1973), golfer, was born in Trenton, Texas, the son of James S. Mangrum, a truck farmer, and Etta Hudgens. In 1919 his family relocated to Dallas, where his financially strapped father began operating a boardinghouse. Within a few years he was exposed to golf through caddying at the Stevens Park municipal course. As a teenager Mangrum attended school infrequently, did odd jobs, and learned the game at Cliff-Dale Country Club. In 1930, at age sixteen, Mangrum turned professional. In that same year he and his older brother Ray, already an accomplished player who would win several titles, headed west to southern California, which offered competition and tournament purses....