This rare scrapbook of the Morris County Golf Club Championship of 1898 is one of only a few editions that are known to still exist today. It was compiled by Charles A. Kip and is edition 14 of 100 copies. Founded in 1894, The Morris County Golf Club was the only club in the country that was initially established and operated by women. In 1895, the club joined the United States Golf Association, and three years later in 1898, the U.S.G.A. Men’s Amateur Championship was held in Morristown from September 12th to the 17th. The assembled newspaper clippings, photographs, tearsheets, and programs in the scrapbook document this very well attended and respected event.
The Open Championship received considerable newspaper coverage. Clippings from the New York Times, the New York Herald, the New York Daily Tribune, The Sun, the Evening Post, the Mail and Express, and Harper's Weekly describe the event in detail.
Twenty five original photographs show individual golfers and the various tees, greens, and crowds of onlookers. Published photographs from the newspaper articles show other views. Findlay S. Douglas was the winner of this championship, beating out Walter B. Smith in the finale.
The scrapbook also includes an image of Theodore Havemeyer, (the first president of the U.S.G.A) and the U.S. Amateur trophy that is named in his honor, as well as several portraits of the champions, and a map of the course.
The images shown on this page are just a small part of this entire collection. Click the link below or the "Browse" tab above to see all the items in this collection.
Below are excerpts from a few newspaper clippings contained in the scrapbook. Click on the link to view image of the original newspaper clipping.
THE MORRIS COUNTY GOLF-COURSE.
Harper's Weekly, September 10, 1898
"The mere laying out of a golf-course is one thing; its development into conformity with championship conditions is quite another. The one may be the work of a day; the other is generally the result of years experimenting and rearrangement. All of the famous Old World courses have been perfected after this fashion, and our American links are now passing through a similar process of change and evolution.....The U.S.G.A. has selected the course of the Morris County Golf Club as the scene for the amateur championship meeting of 1898, and the choice is a wise one. The club’s location is central, the accommodation for visitors is excellent, and the playing conditions are of the first order. The length and arrangement of the holes and the character of the turf and hazards make the course a fair proving ground for the best of golf, and it will be the best man who shall win out in the championship meeting..." Read more...
Golfers Play Well
The New York Herald, Sunday, September 11, 1898
"Every train that rolled in to Morristown, N.J. yesterday brought fresh golf arrivals for the all important championship tournament next week. They came from the West, they came from England, and they came from numerous clubs in and around greater New York. With all speed, as soon as these eager would be champions reached the club house, did they get out on the links. The anxiety to swing drivers and brassies and make low scores was observable in all…...Most of the players are guests of residents of Morristown and Madison, and there will be plenty of social gayety during the coming week. A golf dance will be held in the club house one evening and a brass band will furnish music every day on the lawn. Over fifty new golfers will arrive today and the links will present a busy appearance all day long. The lunch and committee tents have been erected, and very little more remains to be done before starting the big contest...." Read more...
The Widespread Interest in Golf
The New York Herald, Wednesday, September 14, 1898
"Only a few years ago golf was practically unknown in America. It was taken up by a few enthusiasts here and the rest of the American sporting world looked on and laughed. The would be funny man came to the front, of course, and described it as a game in which a lot of fools were engaged in trying to hit a quinine pill with a club…Golf has taken so firm a hold upon the American lover of outdoor sports golf clubs have sprung up with such marvelous rapidity from the Atlantic to the Pacific, so many millions of dollars have been invested in the game…" Read more...