Tom Morris

Tom Morris, born 1821, the first icon of golf was not only an Open Champion winning four out of the firsteight tournaments held, he was also a revered club maker, a Club professional at Prestwick in 1851 and laterat St Andrews where he was also the green keeper with the 18th fairway later being named in his honour. Wecan also thank ‘Old Tom’ for designing many of the famous links courses spread throughout England andScotland and he was named as the first honorary professional to the Royal & Ancient Golf Club.He was also a golf ball maker serving his apprenticeship under the watchful eye of Allan Robertson who wasalso one of the first players to gain superstar status and they often played together as a doubles partnership.However after having a disagreement in 1851 over the introduction of the Gutty ball, Tom moved toPrestwick where he became the professional and it was during this time that he started to produce his firstgolf clubs. Upon returning to St Andrews around 1864 he started to take up club making more seriously andby 1870 he had opened his now famous shop situated alongside the 18th fairway of the Old Courseemploying three or more workers. The premises had previously been used by Robert Forgan before he movedhis business nearer to the 18th green.Tom Morris was a stalwart of the old style wooden clubs and continued to produce scare head clubs evenafter the introduction of the Socket head although eventually he offered both styles in order to please themodern players. He also kept producing the long nose style wooden putters in the 20th century in order tokeep this style alive and nowadays collectors scramble to buy these clubs. After his death at the ripe old ageof 87 in 1908 the firm continued in business and introduced the ‘Autograph’.


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