Spotlight

  • Spotlight

    Alex Patrick Perfector Playclub

    This early Alex Patrick of Leven wood club has a hickory shaft circa the early 1920s. This “Patent Applied For” Perfector Driver model has a distinct rounded sole and compact head. The original hash marks on the face are mainly worn away, and there is very little loft on this club, making it a challenge from anywhere but a tee.  There is an original stamped shaft; the length is 43 3/4”. The website, Antique Golf Clubs from Scotland, reports, “Alexander Patrick served an apprenticeship in Leven with his father, John, a cabinetmaker who turned to making clubs, and he inherited the business in 1866 when his father succumbed in the…

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    Stewart Ladies Irons c.1904

    At 20-degrees, 30, 40 and a putter, this set of ladies smooth face irons bears the famed serpent cleek mark of Tom Stewart.  Forged for Tommy Currie, head professional at Dornoch Golf Club immediately after Donald Ross, these lovely irons have some of the most elegant markings I have seen; simple, clean, refined and non-fussed.  Knowing the legends of the ladies game who played at Dornoch, partially accounted for below, who knows whom may have used these clubs at one time or another?  These were offered on eBay for a buy-it-now price that was simply too low to pass up. They have all-original beautifully-stamped shafts, period sheepskin grips and underlisting,…

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    George Lowe Anti-Shank Mashie

    The story of George Lowe is uplifting, in ways.  He was a journeyman in the early years of the expansion of golf, and a gifted clubmaker.  And unlike many of his ilk, Lowe was recognized fairly generously for his craft.  This anti-shank mashie is marked with the common J.H. Hawkins’ “never rust” stampings, probably from the early 1900s.  I find that, with the advanced position of the leading edge, one can produce a reliable and low-boring draw with this club using a stringer-type swing, probably a terrific shot in windy conditions on any links course.  The look of the club at address if off-putting, but if one can ignore the…

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    Kinnell Pattern Putter

    This is my best auction find to date.  I found this distinctive instrument listed in a “clocks, stereophones, and canes” auction online.  It was the only golf club in the auction.  My guess is that it was in an estate with other canes (some of which were Sunday walking sticks with miniature golf heads on them).  I may not have been the only bidder on the item, but there weren’t many, and I venture to say, I got this for a song. The putter is known as a “Kinnell Pattern” putter. Per Ralph Livingston’s book, the putter is described as follows:  “The shallow face on this model is most effective…

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    John Gray Lofter c.1870

    Of John Gray, Jefferey Ellis writes in The Clubmaker’s Art, “Based in Prestwick Scotland, John Gray (1824-1903) was one of the first iron makers, or cleekmakers as they came to be called, to mark his work.  It is believed that Gray initially marked his clubs “J. Gray,” as seen in his earliest clubs.  Gray eventually began using “Jn. Gray,” the mark found on most of his irons.  John Gray is considered to be one of the premier early cleek makers.  His clubs are collectable in any form – lofter, cleek or track iron.” For years, I have been ogling Gray irons as I researched the pre-1900s era and the absolutely…

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    Heritage Golf Baffing Spoon

    Heritage Golf of St. Andrews is a respected maker of modern golf clubs. It is also one of the few firms that uses traditional skills to handcraft historically accurate wooden golf clubs and traditional-style golf balls. Beginning with wood and metal, Heritage Golf’s craftspeople turn, cast, sand, stain, and finish wood and metal into reproductions of early 19th-century golf clubs by such famous Scottish makers as Forgan, McEwan, Philp, and Patrick. Heritage also produces sets of Tom Stewart clubs based on those popularized by golf champions Bobby Jones, Jr., in the 1920s. Modern clubs are pre-molded and assembled in fewer than a dozen steps, but more than 58 separate operations…

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    E.J. Keefe Deep Grooved Niblick

    This niblick is 48 degrees, 36 inches in length and has a handsome D4 swingweight.  I use it primarily for 100 yard shots or less.  It feels though it will also be a handy club out of bunkers; but I have yet to play a round with it yet!  – Rob Birman It’s seller was Edward Joseph Keefe who was born on September 22, 1893 in Boston and died April 13, 1980 in the same city. Born and raised in Charlestown, he married Louise Sullivan in 1915 and became a restaurant cook prior to becoming a golf pro. At one time he was known around Boston for making golf clubs and…

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    Kelly Leonard Long-nose Brassie

    As I worked to assemble an authentic 1890s playset, I was fortunate to have the chance to borrow a set of quality clubs from Chris McIntyre before I set out to purchase my own equipment.  In Chris’ loaner set were some lovely heavy irons – all originals – with wide, suede grips and one curious replica long-nose spoon, marked T. Morris Model, which I later learned was a club made by Tad Moore for a few years, but since discontinued. Chris shared this set with me, along with some gutty balls and an Oakmont ball, so that I could learn to appreciate the true experience of 1890s gutty golf, not…

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    Early Morristown Niblick c.1900

    This MORRISTOWN series smooth face niblick, c. 1898-1902 by Spalding, is in tremendous, original condition.  It sports a bold, clear Morristown shaft stamp and period (original?) sheepskin grip. This really is a magnificent club.  It is carried by a heavy, strong, perfectly straight shaft and an E+ swingweight.  There is a bold crease in the clubhead and rich, dark patina throughout. The club is 38 inches long with a 4 inch hosel. This particular club was trotted out to the local pro at Gearhart Golf Links in Oregon when our playing association held its 2015 tournament.  A member of the club had several hickories and wanted our members to see…

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    1890s Robert Anderson & Sons SF Cleek

    In assembling an 1890 playset, I collaborated closely with Mike Daniels in Pinehurst for the purchase of a number of special clubs, namely my two Carrick irons, a Paxton putter and a nearly unused Forgan lofter.  On a lark, I asked Mike to include an unseen club for me as part of my final order.  It was billed as a “general iron, maker unknown.”  The price was right, so I figured it could potentially be used to fill a gap or as an all-purpose instrument.  The truth is, I don’t know how a general iron is even defined, so I was expecting a mashie-style club that might work nicely (for…