1930 - As the decade commenced it was only 41 years since golf had
begun in the United States in 1889. There were now 5,856 golf courses in
the USA. There were only 3,300 golf courses in the rest of the world and 2,000
of those were in the British Empire. The previous year $21,067,216 had been
spent on golf equipment in the United States, which was 37.4 percent of the
total spent in the country on sporting and athletic goods that year.
The PGA had established a "Code of Ethics".
The name “Professional Golfer” must be and remain a synonym and pledge of honor, service and fair dealing. His professional integrity, fidelity to the game of golf, and a sense of his great responsibility to
employers and employees, manufacturers and clients, and to his brother professionals, transcends thought of material gain in the motives of the true professional golfer.
A member shall be deemed to have violated the Code of Ethics, by
1. Allowing the use of his name or likeness in such manner as to misrepresent golf merchandise, or in which the sale of golf merchandise bearing his name or likeness causes
disadvantage to any group of professionals.
2. Abusing the privileges usually extended to members of the Association, by playing, without invitation on any course, or in any way causing embarrassment to the resident professional.
3. Applying for a position without definite knowledge of its vacancy, or accepting any position or appointment in any but an honorable and ethical manner.
4. Failing to meet obligations promptly, or being guilty of conduct likely to injure the reputation and standing of the Association or any of its members.
Overbrook Golf Club head professional, Bill Leach,
started the year off right. On the first Sunday of January he won the second
place check at the Miami Open. In the last round Leach
shot a 72 to pick up four strokes on Gene Sarazen but it wasn’t quite enough.
Sarazen had turned in a 69 in the morning of the second day and he held on to
win by one stroke. Sarazen’s rounds were 76, 79, 69 and 76 for a 300 total.
Sarazen had now won the tournament four straight years.
Leach finished at 301. Cyril Walker was next with a 302 total.
Berkshire Country Club professional, Al Heron
(304) trailed by one stroke after the first day and ended up winning the fourth
6th in the 1928 U.S. Open
2nd in the 1930 Miami Open
On the same day Bill Leach was finishing
second in Miami Joe Kirkwood, Sr. tied Olin
Dutra for first place in the Long Beach Open in California. The tournament was
played at the Recreation Park Municipal Course.
Kirkwood, who lived in Glenside, Pennsylvania and Dutra tied at even
par 216 and agreed to be co-champions. They split the first and second money
from the $3,500 purse, which earned the two pros $500 apiece. The contestants
played 36-holes the last day and no one in the field broke 75 in the morning due
to a driving rainstorm. Kirkwood’s rounds
were 68, 78 and 70. Dutra’s rounds were 67, 76 and 73. Clarence Clark finished
third with a 218 and Henry Ciuci was next at 219. The low amateur was
18-year-old Charley Seaver who led the first day with a 66. Many years later his
son pitched for the New York Mets in the World Series.
Jim Edmundson, Sr., a former Irish Open champion and the
professional at the North Hills Country Club, was elected Section president on
the fourth Friday of January. The meeting was held at Boothby’s Café on Chestnut
Street in Philadelphia. Riverton Country Club professional
Leo Shea moved from second vice president to first vice president.
Philadelphia Cricket Club professional Alex Duncan
was elected to the office of second vice president. The new
secretary-treasurer was Huntingdon Valley Country Club professional
Robert Stalker. Ed
Clarey, professional at the Juniata Golf Club, was chairman of the
employment committee. Edmundson asked
Duncan to continue as the tournament chairman
and Duncan named
Clarey as his assistant on the committee. A dinner followed the
Shortly after the Section’s annual meeting and elections the first vice
president, Leo Shea, left the Section for a
new head professional position in West Virginia. No one was appointed to fill
Ed Dudley, the professional at the
Concord Country Club, won $750 for a third
place finish at the Southeastern Open on the first of April. Bobby Jones won the
tournament at Augusta, Georgia by thirteen strokes over Horton Smith (297) and
Dudley (298) who finished second and third.
Joe Turnesa and Wiffy Cox tied for fourth with 299s.
The first two rounds were played at the Augusta Country Club’s Hill
Course and the last two were at the Forest Hills-Ricker Course. Jones’ rounds
were 72, 72, 69 and 71 for 284. Since Jones was an amateur Smith won the first
money of $1,000 and Dudley received the
second money. One-hundred plus professionals and amateurs were entered.
George B. Smith
In mid May Bala Golf Club and Lew Goldbeck
were the hosts of the Section Championship again.
George B. Smith, the 128-pound professional at the Moorestown Field
Club, repeated as the champion. He was the Section champion for a second time
with a three over par score of 72-67—139. Smith’s
second round 67 was a course record and he needed it to edge out Yardley
Country Club head professional A. B. "Al "Nelson
(141), , by two strokes. Walter Work,
the professional at the Pine Run Golf Club, finished third with 143. Pine Valley
Golf Club playing professional Charles Lacey, Bill
Leach, and Clarence Hackney, the
professional at the Atlantic City Country Club,
tied for fourth with 144s. There were 53 entries and 10 money places. At
that time the Section Championship was where the Section’s members usually paid
their dues for the year.
1930 Section Champion
On the fourth Monday of May a group of PGA professionals named the Professional
Golfers Seniors Association played what they hoped would be their first annual
national championship at the Philadelphia Cricket Club’s Flourtown Course. To be
eligible one had to have been a head professional for at least 25 years. Long
Island’s Charlie Mayo and former U.S. Open champion Fred McLeod from
Washington D.C. tied for first with 76s. A sudden-death playoff was held that
day to determine a winner. McLeod’s drive was in the fairway and his shot
to the green with an iron came to rest in the center of the green about eight
feet from the cup. Mayo’s drive was in the right rough and his second shot
barely reached the green. From there Mayo holed a 30-foot putt and when
McLeod failed to hole his putt Mayo was the winner. They competed for the
Willie Anderson trophy on which the names of the other deceased U.S. Open
winners were inscribed. The host professional was Alec
Duncan, a native of Scotland and the younger brother of the famous
professional George Duncan. Ashbourne Country Club’s
Dave Cuthbert was the low Philadelphia Section pro tying Gil
Nicholls from the Metropolitan Section for third place at 77. Jack
Hobens finished fifth with a 78.
On the third Monday in June qualifying for the U.S. Open
was held at The Springhaven Club. Eighty pros and amateurs were vying for eight
places in Minneapolis. Ed Dudley (72-70) and
Charles Lacey (70-72) tied for the low score
with 142s. Al Heron (144) was next and
Felix Serafin (147), the professional at the
Country Club of Scranton finished fourth. Bill Leach
(149) and the Lu Lu Country Club professional
Johnny Schuebel (149) also qualified. The other two spots went to
Baltimore professionals. Joe Kirkwood,
Sr. and George B. Smith
were exempt for having been in the top thirty in the U.S. Open the previous
year. The entrance fee was $5.
Clarence Hackney also qualified for the U.S. Open in New York on
the third Monday of June with a 153. Play was over the Fenimore Country Club and
the Quaker Ridge Golf Club. The medalist was Rocky Rich with a 79 at Fenimore
and a course record afternoon round of 69 at Quaker Ridge. There were fourteen
spots and Hackney tied for eighth as a score
of 154 made it on the number.
The British Open was played at the Royal Liverpool Golf Club in Hoylake,
England in the third week of June. Bobby Jones (291) won as it was his "Grand
Slam Year". Jones’ rounds were 70, 72, 74 and 75. Leo Diegel and
Macdonald Smith tied for second with 293 totals. Horton Smith and Fred Robson
tied for fourth at 296. Jim Barnes (297) tied for sixth.
Member of 3 Ryder Cup teams
Section president seven years
PGA president seven years
In late June Ed Dudley won the eighteenth
annual Shawnee Open, which was hosted by the Shawnee Inn & Country Club.
Dudley had rounds of 74, 66, 73 and 69 for a
two-day six-under-par 282. In winning he picked up $600 finishing six strokes
ahead of three-time champion Johnny Farrell (288) who finished second. This was
the second lowest 72-hole score in the tournament history. Johnny Farrell had
scored lower in 1927 but four hundred yards had been added to the course since
then. In the second round Dudley broke the
course record with a six-under-par 66, which netted him another $50. Wiffy Cox
finished third with a 290. Felix Serafin had
the next best finish among the Section members as he took the fourth money with
a 291. Al Heron tied for fourteenth at 301.
The host professional was Willie Norton.
At Minneapolis’ Interlachen Country Club in the second week of July, Bobby
Jones won the third leg of his Grand Slam at the U.S. Open. Three Section
professionals made good showings. Jones’ rounds were 71, 73, 68 and 75 for 287.
Macdonald Smith finished two strokes back in second place with a 289 and took
home the first place check of $1,000. Horton Smith was next at 292 and Harry
Cooper finished fourth at 293. Charles Lacey
(298) finished 7th and won $350 from the $5,000 purse.
Al Heron (301) and
Ed Dudley (303) finished 11th and 17th. They
were also in the money winning $80.25 and $47.50.
George B. Smith, Clarence Hackney, Joe Kirkwood,
Sr., Bill Leach, Felix Serafin and Johnny
Schuebel missed the cut. The tournament was broadcast on radio for
the first time. The final round was on CBS from 6 PM to 8 PM Eastern Standard
Time. This was made possible by announcer Ted Husing carrying a thirty-pound
transmitting apparatus on his back in brutally hot weather.
On the second Monday of July, just two days after the U.S. Open ended,
Ed Dudley was in Pittsburgh to defend his
Pennsylvania Open title. The tournament was held at
the Allegheny Country Club. 36 holes on the last day of the US Open didn’t deter
Ed Dudley. He brought home the title again
winning the state open for the second year in a row. Again the championship was
72 holes and played over two days. Dudley’s
rounds of 73, 74, 70 and 68 for a five-over-par 285, won by six strokes over
Highland Country Club’s Vince Eldred (291). Ohio’s P.O. Hart (294) finished
third and two western Pennsylvania pros Fred Baroni (296) and Perry Del Vecchio
(296) tied for fourth. No one else from the Philadelphia Section finished better
than 20th. Dudley’s 68 in the
final round was a course record.
Later in the week the three-day 72-hole Met Open ended in a tie at the
Fairview Country Club in New York. Willie Macfarlane and Johnny Farrell tied at
280. The next day Macfarlane won a playoff that took twice as long as planned.
In the morning Macfarlane and Farrell ended up still tied after matching one
under par 70s. The committee sent them out for another 18 holes, which
Macfarlane won with a 72 against a 74 for Farrell. Macfarlane’s tournament
rounds were 71, 73, 69 and 67. Horton Smith finished third at 281 missing the
playoff by one stroke. Gene Sarazen and Wiffy Cox tied for fourth with 282s.
Ed Dudley (285) tied for sixth and
Joe Kirkwood, Sr. (288) finished tenth.
On a Sunday, the day after the Met Open ended, the Concord Country Club held
a one-day invitation tournament for ten leading professionals. Joseph C. Luke,
the Golf Chairman at Concord, sponsored the tournament putting up a purse of
$1,550. Gene Sarazen, playing out of Long Island, shot a 30 on the front nine in
the afternoon to win the $500 first prize. He finished one stroke ahead of
Connecticut professional Johnny Golden with a two-under-par 36-hole score of 71
and 67 for 138. Golden (139) won $400 and the host pro,
Ed Dudley, who finished third with 140, won $300. Craig Wood and
Billy Burke tied for fourth at 142. Joe Kirkwood, Sr.
was the only other pro with Philadelphia ties that was invited. The one-day
event drew 1,500 spectators.
On the third Monday of July Al Heron and
his assistant Harry Markel won the head
professional-assistant professional championship at the Philmont Country Club’s
North Course. The Berkshire Country Club team won by three strokes with a 66 and
a 68 for a 36-hole total of 134 that was aided by
Heron’s course record 67 in the morning round.
On the last Monday in July the Section held qualifying for the national PGA
Championship at the Whitemarsh Valley Country Club.
Charlie Schneider, who had left the Rydal Country Club earlier that
year to be the professional at the Pennsylvania Golf Club, led with rounds of 70
and 74 for an even par 144. The other four successful qualifiers were
Clarence Ehresman (146), assistant at the
Philadelphia Country Club, Charles Lacey
(148), Johnny Schuebel (148) and
Joe Kirkwood, Sr. (150).
Kirkwood had to win a four man sudden-death
playoff to lock up the last spot, which he did by making pars on the first two
In the second week of August Clarence Hackney
won the Philadelphia Open at the Cedarbrook Country Club in Mt. Airy.
There were 84 pros and amateurs entered but the defending champion
Ed Dudley was not among them.
Hackney shot a two-under-par 69 in the last
round and picked up 10 strokes on Green Valley Country Club’s professional
George Griffin, Sr. His rounds of 75, 78, 73
and 69 for a two-day total of 295 that earned him a check for $350 and a gold
medal. That brought him in three strokes in front of
Griffin (298). Tavistock Country
Club assistant pro Jack Leach tied for third
with Long Island’s Charles Luhr at 299. The total purse came to $925, which
included two money prizes for professionals who were working at Golf Association
of Philadelphia member clubs.
George B. Smith won another tournament, the Central Pennsylvania
Open, on the next Monday. It was played at the par 66 Galen Hall Country Club.
Smith had a 31 on the last nine to finish
with a 68, which added to his morning 70 gave him a 138 total.
Smith won by two strokes over
Al Heron (140),
George Griffin, Sr. (140) and
Johnny Moyer (140),
the professional at the Shamokin Valley Country Club. They all
tied for second. Ocean City Golf Club professional
Charlie Hoffner finished fifth with a 141.
No one had a par or better score for any 18-hole round that day.
Semifinalist in 1930 PGA
Third in 1937 British Open
Seventh in 1930 U.S. Open
The Section had four members successfully qualify on site for the 32-man
field at the PGA Championship. The championship was played in the second week of
September at the Fresh Meadow Country Club in Flushing, New York.
Charles Lacey (147),
Charlie Schneider (151), Clarence
Ehresman (157) and Joe Kirkwood, Sr.
(157) were the qualifiers for the matches, all played at 36-holes.
Johnny Schuebel failed to qualify. In the
qualifying the players were sent off in three-man pairings at six-minute
intervals. The players were expected to complete the 18 holes, get something to
eat and tee off for their afternoon round exactly four hours after their morning
tee time. The 011158 shooters played off for the last spot.
Lacey made it in spite of breaking his #3
and #4 irons during the morning round of the qualifying. Johnny Farrell and
Horton Smith were the medalists with 145s. In the first round
Schneider lost to Gene Sarazen on the 36th hole one-down
and Ehresman lost to Harold Sampson 4&3.
Lacey and Kirkwood
each won three matches to make it
to the semifinals. On the way to the semifinals Lacey
defeated Charles Guest in the first round 3&2, then he beat Al
Watrous 5&4 and Sampson 4&3 before losing to Tommy Armour, the eventual winner,
one-down. Kirkwood beat Gunnar Johnson 8&7
in the first round, then he got by Jack Collins in 37 holes and he nipped Horton
Smith one-down. In the semifinals he lost to Sarazen 5&4. Armour then defeated
Sarazen one-down in the finals.
On the last Tuesday of September a driving
contest that welcomed all comers was held at Philadelphia’s Municipal Stadium
under the lights. The national amateur was being held at Merion Cricket Club
that week and all of the contestants were eligible to enter, which some of them
did. Some of the leading professionals that were entered were Gene Sarazen,
Tommy Armour, Harry Cooper, Emmet French, Clarence
Hackney and Ed Dudley. Seats
were priced from $1 to $3. There was a purse of $7,500 and more than 100
entered. A tee was constructed at a 40-foot elevation in the south endzone. In
order to qualify for the finals each of the entrants hit three drives into a
sixty-yard wide fairway, which extended for 422 yards. The players were facing a
stiff cold wind so there was almost no roll. In the finals Detroit’s Clarence
Gamber missed the fairway with his first two drives and then proceeded to win
the contest. He won with an average of 256 yards, 5 and 1/3 inches. Gamber’s
longest drive, which was registered on his fifth and final attempt, covered 262
yards and one inch. That was also the longest drive of all the contestants.
Cliff Spencer of Baltimore was next with an average of 250 yards, 1 and 2/3
inches. Washington D.C.’s T. Monroe Hunter finished third with an average of
just over 247 yards. Detroit’s James Beaupre was fourth as he averaged 240
yards. Tony Longo, who was later a Section member, (238 yards, 2
feet, 10 inches) finished fifth, Al Heron
(238 yards, 6 inches) was sixth and Clarence Hackney
(222 yards) was seventh.
The national PGA meeting was at the Palmer House in Chicago during the third
week of November. The delegates voted to increase the number of qualifiers for
the PGA Championship from 64 to 100. The suggestion for the creation of a
business golfer PGA member classification was rejected, as they could not be
admitted due to the apprenticeship rules. Before a person could become a member
he had to serve a three-year apprenticeship in a golf shop under a PGA member.
The delegates also voted to limit the members of the Ryder Cup team to
professionals born in the United States. Before that the restriction had been an
unwritten understanding for eligibility. Charles W. Hall was elected president.
Jack Pirie was reelected secretary and Jack B. Mackie was reelected treasurer.
The vice presidents were W.H. Way, Harold Sampson, Dan J. Goss, Jack Shea,
Thomas Boyd and Bob Johnson. The delegates to the meeting from the Philadelphia
Section were Alec Duncan and
1931 - The R&A sanctioned the use of steel-shafted golf clubs for all tournament
play. The USGA had made them legal for tournament play in late 1924. By the late
1920s steel had almost completely replaced hickory in the United States.
On the second weekend in January Ed Dudley
was on the West Coast winning the Los Angeles Open. This, his first PGA Tour
victory earned him $3,500 from the $10,000 purse. A last round 68 brought him
home two strokes in front of Al Espinosa (287) and
Eddie Loos (287), who had been the professional at the
Philadelphia Cricket Club in 1917. Tommy Armour and Frank Walsh tied for fourth
with 288s. Dudley played the 72 holes in
rounds of 72, 73, 72 and 68 for a total of 285 strokes.
One week later on the third Monday of January, Alec
Duncan was elected president at a Section meeting at the Penn
Athletic Club in Philadelphia. Roxborough Country Club’s professional,
Herb Jewson, who had been the president of
the Section for four years in the 1920s, was back in office as the
secretary-treasurer. He was called on to replace Robert Stalker
who had died recently. Leo Shea had been the first vice
president the year before and would have been elected president but he had moved
to West Virginia to take a new head professional position.
Duncan was elected because of the executive ability he had shown
on the tournament committee and his skill as a witty after-dinner speaker.
Ed Clarey was elected first vice president
and Bala Golf Club professional Lew Goldbeck
was elected second vice president. At this meeting two proposals of
interest were discussed. A new larger, lighter golf ball was endorsed by the
Section. The ball measured 1.68 inches in diameter and weighed 1.55 ounces. The
previous ball had been 1.62 inches and 1.62 ounces. One reason given for the
change was that the ball would sit up better and be easier to hit from the
fairway. Another reason for the lighter ball was to put the spoon (3-wood) and
the long irons back into the game since it wouldn’t go quite as far as the
heavier ball. The USGA was concerned that the older courses were becoming
obsolete. The members didn’t have much choice about the matter, as this was the
only ball sanctioned by the United States Golf Association. However they went on
record as unanimously approving the ball. The other proposal of interest wasn’t
a new one as it had been brought up before. The suggestion was made by several
members to change the Section Championship to match play from stroke play. It
was pointed out that the national PGA Championship was contested at match play
so the Section Championship should be played under the same format. The
tournament committee agreed to consider the change.
Joe Kirkwood, Sr. won the Southeastern Open in Augusta, Georgia at
the end of March. He finished two strokes in front of Paul Runyan (292) with
rounds of 74, 74, 71 and 70 for a total of 290 and took away a check for $1,000.
The last round was played in driving rain and Kirkwood
came from five strokes behind to win. His last round, a one-under-par
70, was the low round of the day. Willie Macfarlane (293) finished third and
Johnny Farrell was next at 295.
George Griffin, Sr.
1931 Section Champion
Riverton Country Club and their professional Walter
Brickley hosted the Section Championship on the second Monday of May.
The winner was George
Griffin, Sr. with a score of 72-77—149.
Griffin nipped The Springhaven Club’s assistant professional
Bill Cone (150) by one stroke in the one-day
36-hole tournament. A.B. "Al "Nelson and
Clarence Hackney tied for third at 151 as
eight professionals finished in the money. There were 41 entries.
Joe Kirkwood, Sr. (308) finished tied for 26th in the
British Open at the Carnoustie Golf Club, Angus, Scotland in the first week of
June. Tommy Armour was the winner giving him his third victory in a major.
Armour’s rounds were 73, 75, 77 and 71 for 296. Jose Jurado (297) finished
second one stroke back. Gene Sarazen and Percy Alliss tied for third with 298s.
On the second Monday in June
20-year-old Robert “Buzz”
Campbell led the
qualifying for the U.S. Open
at the Whitemarsh Valley Country Club with a 72 and an 80 for 152.
was the assistant to his father
at the Old York Road Country Club.
now the pro at the Airport Driving Range in Camden, was next with a 153.
George B. Smith
(154) and Clarence Hackney
(157) also qualified.
Two Maryland pros also qualified at Whitemarsh. There were 1,150 entries
competing at twenty locations and 74 of them were at Whitemarsh.
and Al Heron,
who was now the professional at the Riverside
were exempt due to having finished
in the top thirty in the U.S. Open the year before but
didn’t enter the
In the third week of June Ed Dudley won
his second PGA Tour tournament of the year, the Western Open at Dayton, Ohio.
His four-under-par 280 total for the three days beat Walter Hagen (284), who
finished second, by four strokes. Gene Sarazen (287) and Jock Collins (287) tied
for third, seven off the pace. Dudley’s
rounds were 69, 70, 70 and 71. The Western Open first played in 1899 had the
status of a major at that time.
The Ryder Cup Matches were back in the United States at Columbus, Ohio in
late June. The captain Walter Hagen was determined to field the strongest team
possible. He held a seventy-two-hole qualifier at the host club, Scioto Country
Club, the week before the cup matches to fill the last four places on the team.
Future Section member Leo Diegel was one of six professionals already
chosen for the team. Ed Dudley, who had been
a member of the losing team in 1929, was one
of thirteen professionals invited to Scioto to compete for the last four places
on the team. Dudley didn’t make the team but
Denny Shute a future Section member did. Shute had to win an
eighteen-hole playoff after being tied for the fourth place at the end of the
seventy-two holes. Hagen’s plan seemed to bring results as the U.S. team
defeated the visitors from the British Isles by a comfortable 9 to 3 margin.
Henry Cotton was selected for the British team but was uninvited since he
insisted on traveling alone.
In the first week of July the U.S. Open was held at the Inverness Club in
Toledo, Ohio. The defending champion Bobby Jones had retired from competitive
golf so O.B. Keeler who had become famous writing about Jones’ golf had been
hired by NBC. Keeler gave a report on the tournament over radio from 6:30 to
7:00 p.m. each day. On Saturday Keeler broadcast his show while following the
leaders through the final holes with a portable transmitter strapped to his
back. Because of the new 1.68-inch ball all the contestants' golf balls were
measured at the first tee. Billy Burke and George Von Elm ended regulation play
tied at 292. The next day a 36-hole playoff was held. Burke was around in
73-76=149 and Von Elm tied him with 75-74=149. The next day the two pros met in
another 36-hole playoff. This time Burke prevailed with (77-71) 148 against Von
Elm’s (76-73) 149. Burke’s tournament rounds were 73, 72, 74 and 73 for
292. First prize was $1,000. Leo Diegel finished third at 294. Wiffy Cox
and Bill Mehlhorn tied for fourth at 295. Ed
Dudley (301) finished 15th winning $57.50 as 20 places
were paid. Clarence Hackney (312) tied for
43rd and George B. Smith (315)
tied for 46th. Buzz Campbell
withdrew after the first round. Johnny Schuebel
missed the cut.
The Pennsylvania Open was played at the Philadelphia Cricket Club’s Flourtown
Course in mid July. Felix Serafin grabbed
the title with a two-day three-over-par 287. Serafin’s
rounds were 76, 70, 71 and 70. He came from six strokes back after the first
day to win by three over the defending champion, Ed
Dudley (290), who finished second. France’s Aubrey Boomer and New
York’s Joe Turnesa tied for third at 291. Ten pros won money from the $1,080
purse and the winner took away almost one-half, $500.
Won 1923 Canadian Open
Member of the pre Ryder Cup Team
Won New Jersey Open 3 straight years
Won Philadelphia Open 3 times
Won Section Championship 2 times
The Met Open was held in the third week of July at the Crestmont Country Club
in New Jersey. Looking for a third Met Open title Macdonald Smith began slowly
with rounds of 76, 72 on the first two days. In the morning of the third day
Smith burned up the course with a record six under par 66 and he tacked on a 71
in the afternoon. The last round was played in driving rain. Smith’s 285 total
brought him in five stokes in front of Gene Sarazen (290). Johnny Farrell (291)
was next two strokes in front of Ed Dudley
and Willie Macfarlane who tied for fourth with 293s.
At the Philadelphia Open in the second week of August at the Manufacturers
Golf & Country Club, Ed Dudley led after the
morning round on the first day of the 72-hole event with a par 72. During the
afternoon round there were heavy rains and thunderstorms, which made the course
unplayable. The sponsor of the tournament, the Golf Association of Philadelphia,
decided to cancel out the scores for the whole day even though the morning round
was played in perfect sunny weather. Their interpretation of the rules of golf
was "If the committee considers that the course is not in playable condition it
shall at any time have the power to declare the day’s play null and void". No
one went out on the course to tell the competitors that play had been canceled.
One of the forty-three competitors who finished was
Dudley. As he was nearing the 18th green lightning struck near the
clubhouse and the flash reflected off his club. He stayed on his feet but his
leg was temporarily paralyzed and it was about thirty seconds before he could
walk again. He finished with an 81 but the score didn’t count. The next day
(Tuesday) the tournament, now reduced to 36-holes, was resumed. The winner for
the second straight year was Clarence Hackney
with rounds of 72 and 75 for 147. Dudley,
A.B. "Al" Nelson, Dudley’s assistant
Ralph Hutchison, and Baltimore professional
Ralph Beach tied for second with 150s.
The Section members held qualifying for the PGA Championship at The
Springhaven Club in the middle of August. George Low,
Jr., 19 year-old assistant to his father,
George, Sr. at the Huntingdon Valley Country Club, led the
competition for the seven places in the national championship with 72-73 for
145. Ed Dudley picked up the second spot
with a 146. Next at 147 were Joe Kirkwood, Sr.
and Clarence Hackney. The fifth and
sixth spots went to Charlie Hoffner and
John Beadle, the professional at the Paxon
Hollow Golf Club, who each posted 148s. Harry
Markel and his former boss Al Heron
ended up in a tie for the last spot at 150. The spot went to
Markel, who was now the head professional at
the Berkshire Country Club, when he birdied the first hole against a par
for Heron. Before the qualifying began there
had been questions over who was eligible for the tournament. All of the
competitors had paid their PGA dues but several had been late with their
payments. In order to be eligible for the PGA $35 of the $50 dues had to be paid
by July 15. Four of the pros who had not paid their dues on time were
Markel and the host professional
Andy Campbell. Even though Campbell
had been two days late with his dues the PGA of America had accepted his
entry, maybe because he was hosting the qualifying event. The pros not in the
good graces of the PGA competed in the qualifying rounds under protest. Since
the national PGA office had accepted Campbell’s
entry the local officers allowed the other late payers to compete. That
evening George Sayers, professional at the
Merion Cricket Club, and Spring Hill Country Club professional
Marty Lyons, who had both missed qualifying
by one stroke, sent a letter of protest via overnight wire to the PGA of
America. It stated that three of the qualifiers were late paying their dues and
were not in good standing as of July 15 and should not have been entered in the
qualifying event. Of the three accused, Hoffner
had paid his dues two days late. Markel and
Hackney had been 30 days late with their
payments. Two days later the PGA declared Markel
and Hackney ineligible for the PGA
Championship. Heron, who had lost in a
playoff two days before to his former assistant Markel,
was now in the championship. The Section Secretary
Herb Jewson announced an 18-hole playoff
would be held the next day for the seventh qualifying place.
and the host professional Campbell
who had shot 151 scores were scheduled to playoff.
Campbell wired the PGA to say that he did not care to play in the PGA
Championship. The 18-hole rain soaked playoff between
Lyons and Sayers ended in a tie
with 79s. A second 18-hole playoff was held in rain the same day, which
Lyons won handily with a 73 against an 85
Kirkwood had to qualify even though he had been a semi-finalist in
the PGA the year before and Dudley had to
qualify even though he had won two tournaments on the PGA Tour that year.
In mid September nine Section
members, seven qualifiers plus
who had been declared ineligible by the PGA, showed up at the Wannamoisett
Country Club in Rumford, Rhode Island for the
said he had not been notified that
his dues payment was overdue. He also said that he didn’t know he had been
barred from participating in the championship until he arrived at Wannamoisett.
He threatened to take legal action by applying for an injunction against the
playing of the championship. When the PGA officials were told of this they
changed their stance.
were given starting times for the
qualifying rounds. Hackney
missed qualifying for the matches
missing the playoff for
the last spot by one stroke. Gene Sarazen was the medalist at (73-72) 145.
Joe Kirkwood, Sr.
qualified for the 32-man match play with 151s. Failing to qualify along with
Al Heron, John Beadle, Charlie
Hoffner, Marty Lyons
George Low, Jr.
both lost in the first
lost to Cyril Walker
3&2 and Kirkwood
lost to Tommy Armour
2&1. All of the matches were 36-holes. Long shot Tom Creavy won by beating
future Section member Denny Shute
in the finals
2&1. To reach the finals Creavy defeated Sarazen 5&3 in the semifinals and
got by Billy Burke
Later that year it seems like the tournament committee had listened to the
suggestions for a Section match play championship.
A match play tournament, though not the Section Championship, was held at the
end of September at the Paxon Hollow Golf Club. The professionals qualified for
16 places the morning of the first day and played the first round matches that
afternoon. The low qualifiers were Ed Dudley, Charlie
Hoffner, Jimmy Lyons the assistant at the Gulph Mills Golf Club
and George Griffin, Sr. with 74s. They
played two matches the second day and a 36-hole final the third day.
At the conclusion of the first day’s play the Paxon Hollow Golf Club
added $100 to the purse. The Western Open champion,
Dudley, met the former Canadian Open champion
Clarence Hackney in the finals. Dudley
only led by one hole at the lunch break but in the afternoon round he
was five under par and laid his opponent three stymies as well and the match was
over after the thirteenth hole (6&5). In the semifinals
Howard Slattery, the professional at the Bucks County Golf Club,
4&3 and Hackney put out
Griffin, Sr. 2&1.
Ten months after requiring that the tournament golfers play the 1.55-ounce
golf ball, the USGA changed their minds and introduced another ball late that
year. The new ball would be the same size, 1.68 inches, but heavier at 1.62
ounces. The R&A had not gone along with the USGA ball. The USGA’s new
specifications gave the manufacturers more latitude, as the ball could be larger
than the prescribed size and less than the prescribed weight. Most golfers
didn’t like the light ball they had been required to play and called it the
"balloon ball". The better players felt that the light ball didn’t hold its line
in the wind and didn’t putt well. Late that fall a ball manufacturer had sent
Dudley some of the new balls to test. He
said he thought the new balls were so much better that the pros might be
shooting in the 50s soon. This was the third change in ten years. Prior to 1921
when 1.62 ounces and 1.62 inches were fixed as the standard, the use of any size
ball was permissible.
Alec Duncan was reelected president for the next year at the
Section’s annual meeting on the first Monday of November. They met at the
Denckla Building in Philadelphia. The meeting was restricted to Class "A"
members of the PGA. Ed Clarey was reelected
first vice president and The DuPont Country Club professional
Percy Vickers was elected second vice
president. Secretary-Treasurer Herb Jewson,
who was reelected, reported in his year-end financial statement that $1,912.50
had been paid out in prize money at the Section tournaments. This left a balance
in the treasury of $342.14. This was very good since they had had no money at
the same time the year before. Only $206 of this was immediately available
because $142.14 was in the Manayunk Trust Company that had been closed due to
the Great Depression. Len Sheppard and the
St. Mungo Golf Company who he represented hosted the meeting.
In mid November twenty-three of the Sections were represented by 46 delegates
at the PGA’s national meeting in Boston. The meeting was held at the Statler
Hotel. One Section did not attend the meeting. Herb
Jewson and George Sayers
represented the Philadelphia Section. The delegates agreed to create a uniform
code for the instruction of golf. Every PGA member would be asked to submit his
plan for teaching golf. Sectional boards would study the various plans with the
aid of a physician. The Sectional boards would send their plans to a national
board. The national board would be composed of America’s outstanding golf
teachers, leading amateur golfers, physicians, physical culturists, and the
president of the USGA. The board would agree on one uniform and officially
adopted set of rules for instruction. All members of the PGA would be expected
to adhere to the adopted set of teaching rules or risk losing their PGA
membership if they refused. An examining board would be organized to test every
member’s knowledge of the plan and the future applicants for membership also. No
one would be admitted to the PGA unless he knew the teaching rules and taught
them to his pupils. On the tournament front Gene Sarazen and some of the money
players agreed to play exhibitions to raise funds to support the association’s
tournament bureau. Also at the meeting the dues were reduced from $50 to $40.
President Charles W. Hall, Secretary Jack Pirie and Treasurer Jack B. Mackie
were reelected. The vice presidents were Jack Shea, W.H. Way, Dan J. Goss,
Harold Sampson, John J. Martin and Thomas Boyd. There were now 1,380 PGA
members, an increase of 280 over the previous year.
Ed Dudley had had a very successful year, playing the light ball,
winning the Los Angeles and Western Opens. In winning the Western Open he shot
one of the lower 72-hole scores on record at that time, a 280. In late December
the PGA announced that Ed Dudley had won the
scoring title for the year. He averaged 71.39 strokes for the thirty tournaments
that he entered. Johnny Farrell played in more events than any other pro, 36,
finishing second in scoring with 71.80 strokes per round. Walter Hagen ended up
in third place with an average of 72.0 strokes per round. Gene Sarazen and
George Von Elm, the leading money winners for the year, were in fifth and sixth
place in the final averages with more than 73 strokes per round.
1932 - By late January it was apparent that the new heavier ball was easier to play.
The winning scores on the PGA’s winter tour were lower, from three to nine
strokes, in every event. The pros stated that the ball putted better and cut
through the wind better than any ball they had played before. The PGA went on
record that they hoped the R&A and the other powers of the world of golf would
recognize it as the international ball.
Ed Dudley and Tommy Armour won the International Four-Ball in the
second week of March at the Miami Country Club. They defeated the U.S. Open
champion, Billy Burke, and his partner Johnny Golden in the 36-hole finals by a
margin of 3&2. Dudley and Armour reached the
finals by putting out Gene Sarazen and Johnny Farrell in the semifinals 3&2.
Burke and Golden eliminated Harry Hampton and Neil McIntyre 2&1.
In the second week of May at the Riverton Country Club
Ed Dudley won the other
championship of the Section, now played at stroke play since the Section
Championship was going to be played at match play. After a morning round of 74
Dudley set a new competitive course record
of 69 in the afternoon to finish four
strokes in front of former Section champion George B.
Smith (147). Dudley took
possession of the Public Ledger Cup for the year. A.B.
"All" Nelson and Melrose Country Club
professional Charlie Schneider tied for
third with 149s. Up to that time the cup had gone to the winner of the Section
Championship for one year. It was decided that the cup would remain with the
stroke play event.
Qualifying for the U.S. Open was held at 20 locations in the country on the
first Monday in June. There were 1,012 entries, 139 less than the year before.
Ed Dudley was one of 34 golfers who were
exempt from qualifying. The Philadelphia locale was The Springhaven Club and
with 71 entries nine places were allotted to that site.
George B. Smith was the medalist with a 73 and a 69 for 14 2.
A.B. "Al" Nelson and
Charlie Hoffner tied for second with 144s. The next two places went
to St. Davids Golf Club assistant Bill Green
and Howard Newton, the professional
at the Cedarbrook Country Club who tied with 146s.
Walter Brickley picked up the sixth spot with a 147.
In a sudden death playoff for the last three spots The Springhaven
Club’s professional Andy Campbell (148) and
Felix Serafin (148) got in on the second
hole. Jack Hiner (148), a former assistant at the Green Valley
Country Club, prevailed over Bill Neilan
(148), the professional at the North Hills Country Club for the ninth and
last spot. Even though he qualified Hoffner
didn’t play in the Open that year.
Joe Kirkwood, Sr. qualified for the U.S.
Open at the Olympia Fields Country Club’s #1 and # courses in Chicago on
that same Monday in June. Kirkwood put
together rounds of 78 and 77 for 155 to make it by two strokes. The medalists,
Bob MacDonald and John Bird, shot 151s and there were sixteen spots there.
The British Open was played in second week of June at Prince’s Golf Club,
Sandwich, England. Gene Sarazen (283) won another major championship and he won
by a large margin despite a poor last round. Sarazen’s rounds were 70, 69, 70
and 74. Macdonald Smith, the greatest player to never win a major at that time,
finished second at 288. Arthur Havers finished third at 289. Percy Allis,
Charles Whitcombe and Alf Padgham tied for fourth with 292 totals.
Gene Sarazen won the U.S. Open in the fourth week of June at the Fresh Meadow
Country Club, Flushing, New York. Sarazen (286) put together rounds of 74, 76,
70 and 66 to finish three strokes in front of Bobby Cruickshank (289) and Phil
Perkins (289). Leo Diegel finished fourth at 294.
Ed Dudley (302) finished in the money tying for 14th
and winning $63.34. George B. Smith (303)
tied for 21st, missing the money by one stroke.
Joe Kirkwood, Sr. (304) tied for 23rd and
Bill Green (322) also made the cut.
Felix Serafin, Andy Campbell, Walter Brickley
and Howard Newton missed the cut.
A.B. "Al" Nelson withdrew after the first
The Pennsylvania Open was at the Oakmont Country Club in the second week of
July. Highland Country Club professional Vince Eldred won with a 306 score as
Oakmont proved to be as difficult as advertised. Eldred’s rounds were 75, 77, 78
and 76. Oakmont’s professional and green superintendent, Emil Loeffler (309)
finished second three strokes back. Ed Dudley
and Perry Del Vecchio, professional at the Greensburg Country Club, tied
for third with 311s.
The PGA of America announced that all members in arrears on their dues as of
July 15 would be taken off the rolls. Such former members were not subject to
reinstatement and would have to rejoin as new members.
In mid August Olin Dutra won the Met Open at the
Lido Golf Club on Long Island. After beginning with a 76 and a 73 Dutra posted a
68 in the morning of the third day but he still trailed the leader by five
strokes. A course record 65 in the last round that broke the course record on a
very difficult course brought Dutra (282) a two-stroke victory over Walter Kozak
(284). Joe Turnesa finished third at 288. Bobby Cruickshank, Johnny Farrell and
Vic Ghezzi tied for fourth with 280s.
On August 1st Joe Kirkwood, Sr.
led the qualifying on Philmont Country Club’s North Course for the PGA
Championship. Kirkwood drove all night after
giving an exhibition in Bradford the day before.
Kirkwood stopped at his home for breakfast and then without any sleep
for 24 hours he toured the North Course in 70 strokes twice for a 140 total.
Kirkwood finished five strokes in front of
Ed Dudley (145) who finished second in the
competition for the seven open places. Clarence Hackney
was third with a 146 and Philmont Country Club teaching pro
Joe Coble was next at 152.Charlie
Schneider and Ed Ginther,
professional at the Newark Country Club tied
for fifth with 153s. George B.
Smith (154) birdied the first playoff hole to
beat out four other professionals for the last spot.
One week later two-time tournament runner-up George
Griffin, Sr. won the Philadelphia Open at the Paxon Hollow Golf Club.
He had played in his first Philadelphia Open in 1910 as a teenage shop
assistant. Griffin took home $350 with his
two-day three-over-par 291 as he nipped Ed Dudley
(292) by one stroke. Griffin’s rounds
were 72, 72, 71 and 76. Clarence Hackney
(293), winner of the tournament the two previous years,
and Joe Kirkwood, Sr. (293)
finished two strokes back of the winner. The Golf Association of Philadelphia
provided five money prizes for pros affiliated with their member clubs who did
not finish in the top money places. The purse totaled $955. Secretary of the
GAP, Francis B. Warner, arranged transportation for the benefit of those who did
not have automobiles.
George B. Smith
1932 Section Champion
The PGA Championship was played in early September at the Keller Golf Club in
St. Paul, Minnesota. Of the seven Section members who had qualified locally for
the PGA Championship only Dudley and
Joe Kirkwood, Sr. qualified for the match
play. They had tied for third in the qualifying with 145 totals. Olin Dutra was
the low qualifier at (71-69) 140. Clarence Hackney
(153) lost out in a ten-man playoff for the last two spots. The sudden death
playoff lasted just one hole as two players made birdie threes and the other
eight went home. Joe Coble, Charlie Schneider, Ed
Ginther and George B. Smith also
failed to qualify. Kirkwood lost in the
first round one-down to John Kinder. Dudley
won three matches and reached the semifinals. On the way to the semifinals
Dudley beat Joe Turnesa 8&7, Henry Picard
10&9 and Al Collins on the 38th hole. In the semifinals
Dudley lost to Olin Dutra who went on to win
the championship over Frank Walsh 3&2. It took 38 holes for Walsh to make it
past the defending champion Tom Creavy in the semifinals.
The tournament committee had heeded the proposals from some of the previous
Section meetings and changed the Section Championship to a match play format
with an 18-hole qualifying round. The tournament was also moved to the fall
after having been played in the early part of the year every year except one.
Played at the Concord Country Club in late September the championship was won
for a third time by George B. Smith. He
defeated Clarence Hackney on the 37th hole
in the finals. George Griffin, Sr., won the
qualifying medal with a one-under-par 69. Ed Dudley,
the host professional, did not play in the tournament. He had sprained his ankle
in an exhibition match the day before and walking 36 holes a day would not have
been possible. In the semifinals Smith
defeated John Beadle 2&1 and
Howard Jervis, the professional at the Tredyffrin Country Club 2&1.
Herb Jewson was returned to the office of president at the
Section’s annual meeting on the first Monday of November at McCallister’s
restaurant in Philadelphia.
Jewson had been the president for four years from 1924 to 1927. He
was elected because he had done such outstanding work as the
secretary-treasurer. Two years before when Jewson
was elected treasurer the Section had no money in their bank account and
now they had $653.65. However,
only $412.65 was immediately available since another bank, the Jenkintown
Citizens Bank had closed. Because of the problems the year before the officers
probably thought they should keep the funds in more than one bank but they now
had $241 in two closed banks. For the first time the Section members were paying
their national dues to the PGA of America and their Section dues to the Section
treasurer. Until then the Section collected both of the dues and then in turn
passed the national’s money on to the national office.
Ed Dudley, who ran second in the race against
Jewson, automatically became first vice
president. Ed Ginther was elected second
vice president. A.B. "Al" Nelson was elected
secretary-treasurer. George Low, Sr. was
made an honorary vice president of the Section on a motion presented by
had been the first president of the old Eastern Professional Golfers’
Association and had been runner-up in the 1899 U.S. Open.
Dudley was appointed tournament chairman and he promptly laid out
a plan for the coming season at the meeting. He stated that there would be three
sweepstakes events with each followed by a dinner and a meeting. Any
professional who did not stay for the meeting would be fined. The pro-am
championship would be named the Wasserman Cup for Philmont member Howard
Wasserman who had donated a trophy for the competition. A professional could
bring any amateur that he wanted to, but for the pro-lady championship the
professional had to play with a member of his club. There also would be three
handicap pro-ams for amateurs who scored in the 90s and 100s. Thirty-seven
Section members were in attendance. A meeting was scheduled for the second week
in December to consult with their delegates following their return from the
Philadelphia Section President
1924-27 & 1933-34
The national PGA meeting was held at the Pere
Marquette Hotel in Peoria, Illinois in the third week of November. The delegates
elected their first American born President, George R. Jacobus. Jack B. Mackie
was reelected treasurer and R.W. "Doc" Treacy was elected secretary. The vice
presidents were Thomas Boyd, James Wilson, Dan J. Goss, Harold Sampson, Fred
Brand and Wolf C. Riman. The elimination of alternates to the PGA Championship
was the big news from the meeting. There was a story going around that an
alternate had attempted to buy a place in the championship. As a result of this
if any qualifier dropped out his place would remain vacant.
Herb Jewson and A.B.
"Al" Nelson represented the Philadelphia Section.
In late November the leading playing professionals in the country formed
an association to promote open tournaments in the United
States and Canada. Two of these professionals were
Ed Dudley and Joe Kirkwood, Sr.
Walter Hagen’s manager, Bob Harlow, was hired to manage their affairs. He
stated that the group would not operate any tournaments in opposition to the PGA
schedule. Harlow explained that the members of the new group were not satisfied
with schedule offered by the PGA Tournament Bureau. The winter tour purses had
totaled $62,000 the previous year but the new winter schedule was only offering
$43,000. The PGA stated that the prize money would compare favorably with other
years considering the present business conditions. President George Jacobus
stated that the PGA appreciates the value of the playing professionals and is
doing all it can to help. Although they made up only a small percentage of the
membership one-fourth of the PGA budget went to the promotion of money
tournaments. Within a few days the PGA announced the hiring of a Chicago
newspaperman to run their tournament bureau.
The country was going through the Great Depression and there were destitute
PGA members. In mid December President George Jacobus appointed an unemployment
relief committee made up of the Section presidents. The presidents would make a
report on any member who was unable to help himself and the association would
see that he was provided for.
Golf balls had been selling for $2 a dozen during the first half of the year
but the price had cracked at the end of June. It was predicted that balls would
sell for $1 to $1.25 a dozen the next year. This was a real bargain since the
gutta-percha golf ball had sold for $3.50 to $4 per dozen in 1899.
1933 - In January Ed Dudley was named golf
professional at the new Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia. He was a native
of Georgia and was the first choice of Bobby Jones for this position from the
time the club was formed. The plans were for him to be at Augusta in the winter
and at Concord Country Club in the summer.
Early in the year, Section Secretary-Treasurer A.B.
"Al" Nelson received word that Denny Shute
had been selected as the new professional at Llanerch Country Club.
An outstanding player and Ryder Cup team member in 1931,
Shute had again been voted onto the team for the 1933 matches.
In mid January Jim Gallagher, the PGA clinic man, visited the pros in
Philadelphia to give them a demonstration on the art of club making. 41 Section
members turned out for the one-day clinic. It was a big help to the younger pros
as well as the older pros who had to learn some of the art all over again
because so many golfers were using steel shafts. Fitting the golfers with the
new steel shafts was a little bit different from the wooden shafts.
Denny Shute won the Gasparilla Open in Tampa, Florida in the
second week of February. The last day he shot a 67 in the morning and a course
record 63 in the afternoon to catch Willie Macfarlane at 272. Shute’s
first two rounds were a pair of 71s and par was 70.
Shute beat Macfarlane with a par on the first hole of a sudden-death
playoff. First prize was $300. Johnny Revolta (276), Horton Smith (279), and
Craig Wood (280) were third, fourth, and fifth.
Joe Kirkwood, Sr. won the 31st North and South Open in
late March at the Pinehurst #2 Course. His 277 score set a new tournament record
by four strokes and he won by five strokes, as he collected the $1,200 first
prize. Kirkwood’s four rounds were 68, 67,
70 and 72. He had stopped giving his trick shot exhibitions for two months and
he felt that this helped his game, as he did not once drive off a fairway in the
72 holes. Harry Cooper finished second at 282. Craig Wood and Horton Smith tied
for third with 285s. Henry Picard was next at 286.
Denny Shute (291) tied for 11th.
U.S. Open qualifying was held at the Old York Road Country Club in Jenkintown
on the third Monday in May. At par 69 and 6,100 yards the 55 contestants all
thought the scoring would be very low. At the end of the day the lowest score
was 150, twelve over par. Bill Neilan, Joe Brennan
now the assistant professional at the Hi-Top Country Club,
John W. Campbell the professional at the
Holmesburg Golf Club and amateur Will Gunn, Jr. all posted 150s.
Ed Ginther and
Johnny Moyer tied for fifth with 151s. Pete
Henry, Sr., assistant to Denny Shute
at the Llanerch Country Club also qualified with a 152.
Shute, Ed Dudley, Joe Kirkwood, Sr. and
George B. Smith were exempt from qualifying
for having finished in the top 30 in the Open the year before.
Kirkwood was now representing the DuPont Penns
Grove Country Club. The usual top professionals from the Section and some from
outside the Section were there but they couldn’t make any low scores that day.
The Met Open was played in the fourth week of May over the Winged Foot Golf
Club’s testing West Course. The winner was Willie Macfarlane with rounds of 72,
72, 75 and 72. Macfarlane (291) made birdie 3s on the last two holes to edge out
Paul Runyan (292) by one stroke. Dick Metz finished third at 293 and the
defending champion Olin Dutra was next with a 295.
A Philadelphia Section PGA stroke play championship was played at Ashbourne
Country Club before a gallery of several hundred in late May.
Ed Dudley played the last nine holes in 33
strokes to win the other Section Championship again with a par score of 71 and
69 for 140. Dudley edged out
Clarence Hackney (141) by one stroke.
Charlie Schneider and
Denny Shute finished two strokes back in a tie for third with
142s. Hackney was trying to take permanent
possession of the Public Ledger Cup as he already had two legs on it but the cup
was Dudley’s to keep for another year with
Won 1933 British Open
Won PGA 1936 &1937
The U.S. Open was
played near Chicago during the second week in June. Six Section members had
qualified in mid May and four more were exempt. Joe
Kirkwood, Sr. (296) tied for ninth, winning $156.25 and
Denny Shute (301) tied for 21st winning the next to last
money prize of $50. Bill Neilan (312) made
the cut but missed the money as an amateur, Johnny Goodman, won the tournament.
Goodman’s rounds were 75, 66, 70 and 76 for 287. Ralph Guldahl finished second
at 288 and Craig Wood was next with a 290. Walter Hagen and Tommy Armour tied
for fourth with 292s.George Smith, Ed
Dudley, John Campbell, Ed Ginther, Pete Henry, Joe Brennan and
Johnny Moyer missed the cut.
The Ryder Cup matches were at Southport, England
in late June. That year the team had been selected by a vote of the PGA Section
presidents and the Executive Committee of the PGA of America. Section members
Ed Dudley and Denny
Shute along with Leo Diegel
who would become a Section member later that year were on the team. The
two days of matches were all even as the last pairing left on the course,
Shute and his opponent, approached the final
green all even. Shute three putted and the
cup went back to Britain. Shute
also lost his foursome match in partnership with Olin Dutra by 3&2.
Dudley won his foursome match in
partnership with Billy Burke one-up and he wasn’t called on for the singles
matches. At that point the record stood at two wins for each country and no team
had won on foreign soil. The British captain J.H. Taylor took a hard line and
had his players up for early morning runs. Again Henry Cotton qualified for the
British team but was not a member of the team. He was working in Belgium and
since the Cup rules stated that only home-born players domiciled in their own
country could participate. Partly due to a six-year recess for World War II the
British would not win again for 24 years.
recovered from his Ryder Cup failure to win
the British Open in the first week of July at the
Royal & Ancient Golf Club, St. Andrews, Scotland. Ed
Dudley opened up with a 31 on the first nine, which Bernard Darwin
called an absurd score. It
included an eagle two at the seventh hole. That helped him shoot a 70, which
trailed the leader Walter Hagen by two strokes. The host professional Andra
Kirkaldy, was performing his ceremonial duty of holding the flagstick at the 18th
green for each player. He was the father of David Kirkaldy, who had been
the professional at the Aronimink Golf Club and the Brinton Lake Club (Concord)
in the early 1920s. At the halfway point Walter Hagen led
Ed Dudley by one stroke at 140. The wind came up for the 36-hole
final day. Leo Diegel and Joe Kirkwood, Sr.
were among five players tied for the lead after three rounds at 216, as
Dudley and Craig Wood trailed by one
stroke. In the fourth round Shute shot his
fourth consecutive 73 and tied Wood at 292. The next day
Shute won the 36-hole playoff by five strokes. In the playoff
Shute put together a 75 and a 74
for 149 against Wood’s 78 and 76 for 154. This was the first time an American
had won while playing in the championship for the first time. The British felt
that this was almost as good as having one of their own win it.
Shute’s father, also a golf professional,
had done his apprenticeship at St. Andrews and his grandmother was still living
in Scotland when he won. Eight of the first fourteen in the championship were
Americans. Diegel, who would be the professional at Philmont Country Club
later that year, finished tied for third with Gene Sarazen and Syd
Easterbrook at 293. Dudley (295) tied for
seventh, and Kirkwood (297) finished tied
for 14th. First prize was 100 pound sterling, which was equal to
The Country Club of Scranton hosted the Pennsylvania Open in the third week
of July. Hollywood Country Club assistant pro Dick Metz took the title to New
Jersey with rounds of 70, 70, 72 and 73 for a three-under-par 285. Metz won $550
of the $1,500 at stake. There were eight money prizes. The host professional and
a past champion, Felix Serafin, finished
second at even par 288. Joe Kirkwood, Sr.
and Pittsburgh’s Ted Luther tied for third at 290. Willie Macfarlane and Sam
Parks tied for fifth with 297s. The tournament drew a starting field of over 140
players and many were players with national reputations.
In late July the PGA Executive Committee held a telegraphic poll and voted 8
to 2 to exempt the Ryder Cup Team members from qualifying
for the PGA Championship. This was good news for Section members
Ed Dudley and Denny
Shute and the rest of the Ryder Cup Team as most of them were still
out of the country when their Sections were holding the qualifying rounds.
On the last Friday of July the Section held qualifying
for the PGA Championship at the Llanerch Country Club.
Buzz Campbell led the scoring by six strokes
with a pair of one under par 71s for 142. Tied for second with 148s were
Al Heron, and Harry Markel.
Bruce Coltart, the assistant to his father
Frank at the Philadelphia Country Club was
next at 149. Joe Brennan and
Charlie Schneider also made the grade with
150s. There were eight places available and Frank H.
Wood, (151) the professional at the Jeffersonville Golf Club,
beat George Low, Jr. (151) for
the last spot, by making two pars in a sudden-death playoff. The Ryder Cup team
members Ed Dudley and
Denny Shute were exempt from qualifying.
Cricket Club’s Flourtown Course. In his first tournament since returning from
the British Open Ed Dudley won the two-day
event with a four over par 288. His four rounds of 72, 72, 75 and 69, which
established a 72-hole record for the Philly Open, beat out the second place
finisher Felix Serafin (297) by nine
strokes. Dudley took away a check for $350
and a gold medal with the image of Bobby Jones on it. North Jersey’s William
Malcolm finished third with a 302. Malcolm had been a caddy at the Cricket
Club’s St. Martins Course 25 years before. In fourth place was
Joe Brennan (303), now the assistant pro at
the Oak Terrace Country Club. Long Island’s Charles Lacey (306), who had
been the assistant pro at the Cricket Club five years before, won fifth money.
The weather was so hot that only 47 of the 125 players who began play completed
the four rounds. Dudley then left on a
three-tournament tour, the PGA, the Canadian Open in Toronto, and the Western
Open in Chicago. There were three money prizes for Golf Association of
Philadelphia pros that weren’t among the other money winners. The prizes added
up to $900.
In the second week of August Ed Dudley
(143) and Charlie Schneider (145) qualified
on site for the 32-man field in the PGA Championship. All of the players with
scores of 146 and better qualified. Jimmy Hines (70-68) and Mortie Dutra (72-66)
tied for the medal with 138s. Denny Shute,
the British Open champion, and Walter Hagen lined up some exhibitions in England
and didn’t arrive home in time to play in their championship at the Blue Mound
Country Club in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Frank H. Wood, Clarence Hackney, Bruce Coltart, Al Heron, Joe Brennan, Buzz
Campbell and Harry Markel
failed to qualify. Schneider lost in the
first round to Al Espinosa 3&2. Dudley won
two matches before losing in the quarterfinal round to Gene Sarazen by 6&5. In
the first round Dudley beat
Ben Pautke 2&1 and he put out Clarence Clark in the second round 3&1. Sarazen
went on to win the title and $1,000 by beating Willie Goggin 5&4. In the
semifinals Sarazen eliminated Johnny Farrell 5&4 and Goggin beat Hines one-down.
The purse was $7,200.
The next week in August Joe Kirkwood, Sr.
won the Canadian Open in Toronto by eight strokes.
Kirkwood kept getting better as the tournament progressed. He
finished with an eagle on the last hole for a 69, which added to his earlier
rounds of 71, 72 and 70 gave him a 282 total. Harry Cooper (290) and Lex Robson
(290) tied for second. Ralph Guldahl finished fourth with a 291. Four-time
Canadian Open champion Leo Diegel, playing out of Agua Caliente, Mexico
tied for fifth with Johnny Farrell and Al Houghton at 292.
The Section Championship was played at the Huntingdon Valley Country Club in
late August. The tournament was held on the A and B nines of the 27-hole course.
There were some unusual happenings in the qualifying.
Howard Slattery, now the professional at the Valley Forge Golf Club,
started the front nine in the qualifying round with three birdies and a
hole-in-one on the fifth hole to stand five-under-par after the first seven
holes. He finished the front side in 31 and was the medalist with a 70. The
defending champion, George B. Smith, lost
out in a playoff for the last place in the qualifying. After the pairings were
made for the match play which commenced that afternoon
Slattery announced that he was withdrawing because he had a
commitment to a full schedule of golf lessons. At this point the match play
pairings were set and could not be changed. Smith
was out and Slattery’s opponent
received a bye. It was hard to believe this happened, as
Slattery had been the tournament chairman a few years before.
There was an added attraction at the Section Championship. As a matter of
courtesy the new British Open champion Denny Shute
played in the qualifying round at Huntingdon Valley. He had previously announced
that it would not be possible for him to compete in the match play as he had an
exhibition tour starting the next day. He was paired with his manager and former
assistant, Pete Henry, Sr. in a four-ball
match against two veteran pros Jack Campbell
and George Low, Sr. the host professional.
Low and Campbell
proved that they could still play as they defeated
Shute and Henry
3&2. Henry went on to be the Acushnet
(Titleist) salesman and distributor for the Middle Atlantic States.
After that the pros got down to the business of the match play for the
Charlie Schneider, who had
gotten his start as a caddy at the old Huntingdon Valley Country Club course in
Noble, won the championship. He defeated another product of the Philadelphia
caddy yards, Joe Brennan, in the 36-hole
final by the count of 9&8. In the semifinals Schneider
defeated George Low, Jr. one-down
and Brennan defeated
A.B. "Al" Nelson one-down.
1933 Section Champion
On September 2nd, two days after the Section Championship ended,
the PGA Tour came to Hershey for the first annual Hershey
Open. Ed Dudley finished off another
successful year by adding another victory to his Philadelphia Open title and
Section stroke play victory. His two-day scores of 73, 72, 70 and 73 for a
four-under-par 288 total won by 10 strokes and earned him $500 from the $1,500
purse. Dudley also won $50 each day for the
low round of the day. Al Espinosa, the second place finisher with 298, won $300.
George Von Elm finished third with a 299. Willie MacFarlane and Johnny Farrell
tied for fourth at 300.
In late October, Ryder Cup Team member and two-time National PGA champion
Leo Diegel signed a contract to become the
professional at the Philmont Country Club. Philmont officials announced that
Diegel would officially start in March. He
had recently finished second in the Eastern Open and he was the chairman of the
National PGA tournament committee. Three members of the 1933 Ryder Cup Team were
now employed in the Section. On the 00111first Sunday in November
Leo Diegel was on the West Coast winning the
Southern California Open in Los Angeles. He put together a six-under-par 282 and
won by five strokes over Willie Hunter.
Won 2 PGA Championships
Won 4 Canadian Opens
Played on 4 Ryder Cup teams
On the first Sunday in November Leo Diegel
was on the West Coast winning the Southern California Open in Los
Angeles. He put together four rounds of 69, 74, 70 and 69 for a six-under-par
282 that won by five strokes over Willie Hunter (287). Ray Mangrum finished
third at 291and Fay Coleman was next with a 292.
Diegel had also won the
tournament in 1930.
The next day, the first Monday in November, the Section’s annual meeting was
at McCallister’s restaurant in Philadelphia. Section President
Herb Jewson and the other officers were
reelected. The main topic of discussion at the meeting was the desire to
establish strict requirements in playing and teaching for PGA membership. One
proposal would make it necessary to turn in at least three scores of 75 or
better in recognized tournaments. The Philadelphia Section was one of several
Sections wishing to create higher standards for membership and eliminate
incompetents from recognition as bonfire professionals. The secretary-treasurer
reported that the Section had a surplus of $272 after having paid out $1850 for
prizes, tournament expenses and incidentals during the year.
Jewson and Clarence
Hackney were elected as delegates to the national PGA meeting
scheduled for later in the month. They were being sent to the meeting with a
mandate to bring the next year’s PGA Championship to Philadelphia. The Llanerch
Country Club that had put in a bid for it. They were told to ask for September
dates since the U.S. Open was being held at the Merion Cricket Club in June.
Tournament chairman, Dudley, told the pros
at the meeting that he wanted them to make every effort to get all the pros,
their assistants, and the amateurs to send in their entries for the U.S. Open
qualifying in May. He wanted 200 entries from the Philadelphia area so they
could have more Section members in the starting field.
The national PGA meeting was held in Chicago at
the Morrison Hotel third week of November. The officers (President George R.
Jacobus, Secretary R.W. "Doc" Treacy and Treasurer Jack B. Mackie) were all
reelected. The vice presidents were James Wilson, Dan J. Goss, Harold Sampson,
Fred Brand and Wolf C. Riman. The delegates decided to exempt the Ryder Cup team
members from qualifying for the matches at their championship in the years that
the matches were being played. Also the delegates were there to try to adopt a
uniform plan for the instruction of the game but there were many heated debates
among the professionals concerning the proper method. There were now 25 PGA
Sections. The national dues were reduced again, this time to $25 for Class A
members. The dues for the assistants (Class D) were still $5. The pros were also
paying Section dues. Leo Diegel
was the tournament chairman for what comprised a PGA Tour at that time.
In mid December Leo Diegel
won again in California. He won the California Open at Long Beach.
Diegel shot another six-under-par 282 to win
by four over Ky Laffoon and Olin Dutra who tied for second with 286s. Willie
Hunter was next at 287. Diegel’s
rounds were 70, 71, 72 and 69.
It had become a ritual for Gene Sarazen to pick his top
ten tournament professionals for the year. When his list was published in
late December Denny Shute, the British Open
champion, was #1 on the list. #2 was Craig Wood.
Joe Kirkwood, Sr. was #3 and
Leo Diegel #5.
1934 - In January Ed Dudley became the
professional at the Philadelphia Country Club. Since he had been a member of the
Ryder Cup team in 1933 he was very well known in the world of golf and
applications for the vacant head pro position at the Concord Country Club came
from everywhere. Some of the applicants were well known professionals from other
countries. Concord received a total of 219 applications. The Melrose Country
Club head professional and Section champion Charlie
Schneider was selected as Concord’s new professional over some
prominent national names such as Paul Runyan, Dick Metz, and Johnny Revolta.
Leo Diegel and Denny Shute
were on the PGA Winter Tour. Diegel was on
the West Coast and Shute was in Florida. The
PGA was having problems getting a schedule organized with conflicting events
being played on both coasts at the same time of the year.
In late February Denny Shute won the
Gasparilla Open in Tampa, Florida for the second year in a row. For the second
straight year he won in a playoff. After tying with Horton Smith at
three-under-par 277, Shute won a playoff the
next day with a 70 against a 72 for Smith. Shute’s
tournament rounds were 67, 68, 70 and 72. Paul Runyan and Willie Macfarlane
tied for third with 282s. First prize was $500 and second was $350. They each
received an additional $75 for participating in the playoff, which was customary
at the time, if the players had to play an extra day.
Denny Shute and Al Espinosa won the International Four-Ball
tournament in Miami in the first week of March. Shute
birdied the 36th hole to beat the defending champions Paul
Runyan and Horton Smith one-down and win the tournament. To reach the finals
Shute-Espinosa team defeated the team of
Bill Mehlhorn-Wiffy Cox 5&4 and the Runyan-Smith team put out the Walter
Hagen-Tom Creavy team 10&9.
Two days before the first Masters tournament got under way in Augusta,
Georgia, Joe Kirkwood, Sr. and Gene Sarazen
boarded a ship in Miami and they were off on a world tour to give their golf
exhibitions. The tour would last almost one year and cover 100,000 miles. First
they visited South America returning to the states in time for the U.S. Open at
Merion. Then they were off to the British Open and a tour of Europe. After that
the two pros played their way across Canada and then they headed for the Far
East where they visited eight countries including China, Japan and Australia.
The first Masters tournament was played at the Augusta National Golf Club in
the fourth week of March. Ed Dudley hosted
the event and shot 288 to finish fifth, four strokes off Horton Smith’s winning
score of 284. On the second day Dudley shot
a 69. No one had a lower score in the tournament. Three others also shot 69s
later in the tournament and that was now the competitive course record.
Denny Shute (294) tied for 13th
and Leo Diegel (295) tied for 16th.
Smith’s rounds were 70, 72, 70 and 72. Craig Wood finished one stroke out of
first place with a 285. Paul Runyan and Billy Burke tied for third with 286s.
There were 61 professionals and amateurs in the field by invitation. The club
held a calcutta, where all the entries were auctioned off. The members had an
understanding among themselves, in which Bobby Jones would sell for the highest
price. The calcutta auction generated $4,543, which wasn’t much less than the
$5,000 purse that the professionals were competing for. First prize was $1,500.
Dudley won $400 for his fifth place finish.
It took a score of 293 or better to make the money.
For two years the PGA had been working to create a uniform code for the
instruction of golf. On May 4th A.B. "Al" Nelson,
the Section secretary, wrote to George Jacobus, the PGA president, concerning
the professionals that had been selected for the Section’s Examining Board. The
Examining Board would test every member’s knowledge of the plan and the future
applicants for membership also. No one was to be admitted to the PGA unless he
knew the adopted PGA teaching method and taught it to his pupils. The
professionals selected for the board were Herb Jewson,
Ed Dudley, George
Sayers, Bill Leach,
Dave Cuthbert, Alec
Duncan, and Nelson.
A Philadelphia Section stroke play championship was played at the
Philadelphia Country Club’s Spring Mill Course on the first Monday of May and
Ed Dudley was the winner of this other
Section Championship for the fourth year in a row and the third consecutive year
at stroke play. This time he took permanent possession of the Public Ledger Cup,
as it was the tradition in golf that if someone won a cup or trophy three
straight years he got to keep it. Dudley’s
71 and 77 for a 148 total finished four ahead of George
Low, Jr. (152). Denny Shute (153)
and Leo Diegel (154) finished third and
fourth. The purse was $130 and first prize was $50. The entry fee was $5.
Ed Dudley didn’t get the turnout of 200 he wanted for the U.S.
Open qualifying rounds but 151 did enter. Qualifying was held on the second
Monday of May at the Huntingdon Valley Country Club. The Philadelphia area had
been allotted 16 places. New York had 16 spots also. Due to the size of the
field everyone didn’t complete the 36-holes and several had to come back and
finish the next day. Clarence Ehresman, now
the professional at the Eagles Mere Country Club, came back home to win the
medal by eight strokes with a 69 and a 71 for an even par 140. Some of the spots
were won by pros from outside the region and the amateurs won three of the
places. Leo Diegel,
Denny Shute, and Joe Kirkwood, Sr.
were exempt. Joe Brennan (149),
Ralph Hutchison (150) and Ed Dudley
(150) made it easily. Thirty-five years after finishing second in the U.S.
Open George Low, Sr. (151) qualified on his
home course to play in the championship again. Now 60 years old, the host pro
won one of the places with the help of a first round 69.
Felix Serafin, Gene Kunes, the teaching pro at the Philadelphia
Country Club, and
George Griffin, Sr. equaled Low’s
score of 151.George Sayers (152), who would
be the host pro for the championship at Merion, and
Johnny Schuebel (152) now the professional at the Oak Terrace Country
Club, also qualified, but not until all the scoring was completed on Tuesday.
The scores of 152 made it on the number without a playoff.
During the qualifying for the Open Frank H. Wood
was stricken with pneumonia and he died nine days later. The Jeffersonville Golf
Club professional was only 32 years old. He was from
Massachusetts having come to Philadelphia with Joe
Capello to be his assistant at the Aronimink Golf Club’s new Donald
Ross course. Wood and
Capello were the same age and had grown up together in Manchester.
For a number of years after that the Wood Memorial Open tournament was played at
The Met Open was held at the Echo Lake Country Club in New Jersey during the
fourth week of May. Paul Runyan won with rounds of 73, 72, 71 and 71 for 287.
Runyan holed a five-foot putt for a par on the last green to edge out Walter
Hagen (288) by one stroke. Wiffy Cox finished third at 288 and Craig Wood was
next at 291.
returned to the Philadelphia area after a 24-year absence. Played at the Merion
Cricket Club’s East Course in early June the host pro was
who was in the first pairing on Thursday morning
at 7:30 a.m. Olin Dutra came from eight strokes back
after 36 holes to win the championship with a 13-over-par 293 score. Dutra’s
rounds were 76, 74, 71and 72. Gene Sarazen (294) lost by one stroke after taking
a seven on the 11th hole during the last round. Harry Cooper, Bobby
Cruickshank and Wiffy Cox tied for third with 295s. Thirteen Section
professionals were in the starting field for the championship and six made the
cut. Joe Kirkwood, Sr.
Leo Diegel (303)
led the Section pros in the scoring and finished in the money tying for 12th
and 17th. Ed Dudley (309),
Denny Shute (311),
(314) and Johnny
Schuebel (319) made the cut but missed the
money. Felix Serafin, Ralph Hutchison, George
missed the cut. The purse totaled $5,000. Joe
Brennan withdrew in the second round and
George Low, Sr. withdrew in the first round.
Two days after the U.S. Open ended 103 players teed off in the Philadelphia
Open on Philmont Country Club’s North Course. Herman Barron was the winner in
spite of shooting a seven-over-par 77 in the last round while playing in a heavy
rainstorm. The Port Chester, New York professional collected $400 for the win.
Barron shot a one-under-par 69 in each of the first three rounds and finished
with a 284 total. Barron, who was unattached, had missed the money at the U.S.
Open. He almost didn’t enter but then decided to put up the $5 entry fee. Los
Angeles professional Jimmy Thomson finished second three strokes back at
287. Thomson had a 31 on the front nine and a 31 on the back nine during
the tournament. Philmont had put up $100 for the first contestant who broke the
course record of 69. In the second round Ed Dudley
shot a 67 and Thomson who was paired with him had a 68. Philmont
very generously gave each of them $100. In addition to that the purse was
$1,000. Dudley finished third with a 290.
Ted Turner, the new playing pro at the Pine
Valley Golf Club, was playing in his first tournament in the Section.
Turner (295) came in with a 69 in the last
round to move up to the fourth position. Dudley’s
new assistant at the Philadelphia Country Club,
Gene Kunes (296), was next in fifth place.
Section qualifying for the PGA Championship was held at the Riverton Country
Club in mid June. Any Section member who wanted to enter
the qualifying rounds had to have his dues paid by June 10. Based on 65 members
who had paid their dues on time the Section had been allotted eight places.
There were 32 entries. On a very windy day Ted Turner,
the current holder of the Massachusetts Open title, led the scoring with a
71-73 for a two-over-par 144. Gene Kunes,
who had succeeded the late Frank H. Wood as
the professional at the Jeffersonville Golf Club, and
A.B. "Al" Nelson, were second at 147. Next were
Clarence Hackney and Hugh McInnes,
the professional at the Country Club of York with 149s. The last three places
went to George Sayers,
Ralph Hutchison and Ed Ginther.
They had tied for the last three spots with Jock MacKenzie at 150 and had
eliminated him in a sudden-death playoff. Sayers
and Hutchison got in with pars on the
first hole and Ginther earned the last spot
with a par on the second hole. As the day went on, it got windier and
the last players finished in a gale and rain. The PGA accepted no alternates for
the tournament. If a qualifier could not play in the tournament he was not
replaced. Ed Dudley,
and Denny Shute were exempt as members of
the Ryder Cup Team.
Denny Shute was fortunate that he didn’t have to qualify for the
PGA Championship because in late June he was in England defending his
British Open title at the at the Royal St. George’s Golf Club, Sandwich,
England. Everyone, including Shute, had to
pass through a pre tournament qualifier of 36-holes for the British Open. Henry
Cotton won by five strokes in spite of a last round 79. Cotton’s first three
rounds were 67 65 and 72, which allowed him to finish with a score of 283. Sid
Brews finished second at 288 and Alf Padgham was next at 290.
Joe Kirkwood Sr., Macdonald Smith and Marcel
Dallemagne tied for fourth with 292s.
Shute finished 20th with a score
Two Ryder Cup teammates from the year before met in the finals of the
Pro-Lady Championship on the second Tuesday of July. Ed
Dudley and former national women’s amateur champion Florence
Vanderbeck, defeated Leo Diegel and his
partner for the title. The tournament was held at the Ashbourne Country Club.
New York’s Willie Macfarlane won the Pennsylvania Open in the third week of
July. Played at the Oakmont Country Club, Macfarlane finished four in front of
two Pittsburgh professionals, Sam Parks, Jr. (298) and Perry Del Vecchio (298).
Macfarlane put together rounds of 76, 69, 71 and 72 for a six over par 294,
which was a 72-hole record on that course by four strokes. First place was worth
$600. Bill Mehlhorn (299) finished fourth and Al Espinosa (300) fifth.
Denny Shute (302) finished sixth and he was
the only Philadelphia Section pro who made the money. A gallery of 5,000
witnessed the final round.
Four days later in July the PGA Championship was played at the Park Club in
Buffalo, New York. Five Section pros made it through the 36-hole qualifying at
Buffalo for the 32 places in the match play. Gene Kunes
led the Philadelphia pros with a 141. Ted Turner
and A.B. "Al" Nelson were next with 145s.
Denny Shute and Leo
Diegel posted 146s. Shute and
Diegel survived a ten-man playoff for the
last eight spots that began at 8pm. The medalist was Bob Crowley with a (67-71)
138. Ed Dudley, Clarence Hackney, Ed Ginther, George
Sayers, Ralph Hutchison and Hugh McInnes
didn’t make it through the qualifying test.
Shute and Kunes each won three
matches to reach the semifinals. Shute lost
2&1 to Craig Wood who he had beaten in a playoff for the British Open the year
before. To reach the semifinals Shute beat
Walter Hagen 4&3, then he defeated Ky Laffoon 3&2 and in the third round he
eliminated Al Houghton 6&5. Kunes lost 4&2
to Paul Runyan who then defeated Wood in 38 holes for the title. Four years
before that Runyan had worked for Craig Wood as his assistant. In his march to
the semifinals Kunes beat Orville White 3&2,
Johnny Revolta 2&1 and Crowley 4&3. Turner
won his first match by getting past Willie Goggin in 37 holes and then he lost
to Crowley one-down. Nelson lost in the
first round to Tommy Armour 4&3 and Diegel
went out in the first round 4&2 to Fay Coleman. All of the matches were 36
holes. For the fourth straight year the purse was $7,200. All who failed to
qualify for the match play were paid mileage money. Those who lived more than
2,000 miles from Buffalo received three cents per mile. Those who lived less
than 2,000 miles and more than 50 miles received two cents per mile.
The Central Pennsylvania Open was held at the Reading Country Club on the
first Monday in August. The one-day 36-hole tournament ended in a three-way tie.
George B. Smith (74-75),
Clarence Hackney (77-72) and
Angelo Paul (76-73), the assistant pro at the Valley Forge Golf Club,
posted seven-over-par 149s. Valley Country Club professional
Terl Johnson finished fourth with a 151.
None of the entrants could break par in either of the rounds.
Smith, now the professional at the Spring
Hill Country Club, won the playoff that was held almost two weeks later
with a 71 against a 74 for Paul and an 81
for Hackney. This was his second Central
Pennsylvania Open title.
In the second week in August Leo Diegel
won the Walter Hagen Tournament in Rochester, New York. In the last round he
came through with a course record tying 66 to go with his earlier rounds of 70,
69 and 71 to finish at eight-under-par 276. Ky Laffoon (278) finished second.
Harry Cooper tied Willie Macfarlane tied for third with 282s.
The Section Championship was played at North Hills Country Club in late
August without the Section’s three Ryder Cup team members,
Ed Dudley, Denny Shute, and
Leo Diegel who did not enter. They might not
have entered because the Hershey Open was played two days after this tournament.
Gene Kunes won the qualifying medal with a
74. The low sixteen players qualified. Kunes,
who was 25 and his assistant Bud Lewis, who
was also 25 met in the finals. The final, played over 36-holes, ended in favor
of Kunes by a margin of 5&4. In the
semifinals Kunes defeated
Harry Markel by 4&3 and
Schneider 3&1. The host professional was
Semifinalist at the PGA
On August 31st, two days after the Section Championship ended, the
pros teed off in the Hershey Open. The purse was increased to $2,500 and an
admission fee of 99 cents was charged. Ed Dudley
(291) and Joe Turnesa (291) tied for second five strokes back of the
winner Ky Laffoon who put together rounds of 71, 72, 72 and 71 for 286. Laffoon,
playing out of Denver, had worked for Dudley
as an assistant in Oklahoma when he was 13 years old. He won $600 and set
a new Hershey Open record with his six-under-par 286. Willie Macfarlane finished
fourth at 294 and Henry Picard was next with a 295, which was made
possible by a course record 67 in the first round. Six Section professionals won
money from the 20 money prizes offered. Ted
Turner (298) tied for 8th,
Denny Shute (301) tied for 14th and
Charles Schneider (303) tied for 17th.
Gene Kunes and Terl
Johnson tied for 20th with 305s.
Denny Shute won the 72-hole Rivervale Open in New Jersey in mid
September with rounds of 72, 68, 73 and 70 for a score of 283, five under par.
He won $600. Shute finished nine strokes in
front of Felix Serafin and Bill Goldbeck
who tied for second with a 292. Goldbeck was the brother of
Lew Goldbeck and a former professional at
the Buck Hill Golf Club and the Wolf Hollow Country Club. Wiffy Cox (293)
finished fourth, one stroke ahead of Charles Lacey (294) and Joe Turnesa
(294) who tied for fifth.
Leo Diegel was still playing well as he won the $2,500 New England
PGA. Played in Providence, Rhode Island in the
third week of September first prize was $500. Diegel
put together rounds of 70, 72, 70 and 71 edged out
Denny Shute (284) and Joe Turnesa (284) by one stroke with his
five-under-par 283 score. Turnesa putted with one hand in that tournament.
Diegel won $500 from the $2,500 purse.
A few weeks later it was announced that 28-year-old
Henry Picard would be the new head pro at Hershey Country Club on
November 1st. In the Hershey Open Picard
had led after 36 holes while setting a new course record with a
first-round 67. He had finished fifth winning $200.
In mid October Leo
Diegel and Denny
Shute left for a ten-week tour of Australia
and New Zealand. They were members of a six-man team of American professionals
chosen to play matches against the Australian professionals and compete in their
tournaments. The other members of the team were Craig Wood, Paul Runyan, Ky
Laffoon, and Harry Cooper. Diegel played
some of the best golf of his career. In late November
Diegel beat Shute in the finals
of a tournament in Melbourne and one week later he and Paul Runyan tied for
first in a tournament that was shortened to 36-holes due to rain. Three days
later Diegel won in Adelaide with a 282
total. Diegel didn’t receive all this money
though because the winnings of the team members was pooled and divided equally
among the six professionals. Jimmy Thomson made out the best since he
went to Australia on his own and won the Melbourne Centenary Open and its $5,000
first place check. That was a big payday. The largest first place check on the
PGA Tour that year had been the $1,000 Runyan received for winning the PGA
On October 19th the PGA of America announced that nineteen
tournaments had been scheduled for the Winter Tour.
It was the richest schedule for the playing pros since the boom in the late
1920s. Even though tournament golf was on the rise the country was still in the
height of the Great Depression and not all was rosy for golf. One indication was
that Concord had had 219 applications for the head professional position. In
July Brigantine Golf Club sold for $7,500 and $35,000 in back taxes. Only one
nine was still open, as the other had been closed. It had been opened in 1927
with a hotel and marina at a cost of $1,000,000.
On the fifth Monday of October Ed Dudley
was elected president of the Section at McCallister’s restaurant in
Philadelphia. He would be the president for the remainder of the decade.
Dudley must have been a busy person as
Section president, head professional at two prestigious clubs, and a tournament
schedule active enough to allow him to qualify for the Ryder Cup team again in
1937. Under Dudley’s leadership a set
minimum rate for instruction was established in the Section.
Walter Brickley was elected
secretary-treasurer. He would hold the office of treasurer for nineteen
consecutive years, 1935 through 1953, along with being both secretary and
treasurer for the first five years. Charlie Schneider,
Lu Lu Country Club professional Robert Aitken,
and A.B. "Al" Nelson were elected first,
second and third vice presidents. A board of examiners was appointed to settle
any disputes of the Section’s members and pass on new members. There were
twenty-five tournaments on the schedule for the next year.
Clarence Hackney and A.B. "Al" Nelson,
who had played in the PGA Championship that year, were elected to represent the
Section at the national meeting in November. The Section members went on record
that they wanted all the qualifiers for the PGA Championship to go into the
match play rather than compete in another qualifying event at the site of the
In the third week of November the national PGA meeting was held at the
Morrison Hotel in Chicago. The officers (President George R. Jacobus, Secretary
R.W. "Doc" Treacy and Treasurer Jack B. Mackie) were reelected. The vice
presidents were James M. Anderson, Thomas Boyd, Dan J. Goss, John J. Martin,
Johnny Farrell and Willie Maguire. The 55 delegates and officers in attendance
agreed to qualify 64 on site for the match play at the PGA Championship. It was
also decided to exempt the eight quarter-finalists from the previous year’s
tournament from qualifying. It was reported that the PGA Tour had played for
$112,000 that year and tournaments with purses totaling $125,000 had already
been scheduled for the next year. The delegates voted unanimous opposition to
the practice of having pari-mutuel betting connected to PGA Tour events. They
urged their members not to support those tournaments and not participate in
them. Leo Diegel was the chairman of the
tournament committee and Denny Shute was a
member of his committee.
Paul Runyan led the money winners on the PGA Tour for the year taking home
$6,767.91 from twenty-one tournament appearances. In second place was Ky Laffoon
who played in 22 events and won $6,419.22. Leo Diegel
who was in his first year as the professional at the Philmont Country Club
played in only seven tournaments and won the third most money, $6,300.
Denny Shute who entered sixteen tournaments
was in sixth place with $5,032.16. Hershey’s new professional
Henry Picard had entered eight tournaments
and was 23rd on the money list with $1,878.41.
Ed Dudley played in eight tournaments and won
$886.68, which was good for 41st place on the money list.
Gene Kunes was 46th as he earned
638.47 in six tournaments. Felix Serafin was
49th, winning 537.50 in two tournaments.
That year there was a new trophy on the PGA Tour called the Radix Cup. A
Chicago sportsman named Harry Radix had donated the trophy for the best scoring
average of the year. During the year a player had to play in at least ten
tournaments that had a purse of $2,500 or more. Ky Laffoon finished at the top
of the list with an average of 72-20/77 for his 77 rounds.
Leo Diegel was eighth with 73-7/38 strokes per round and
Denny Shute averaged 73-28/29 to finish 14th.
Diegel had 38 rounds in the compilation and
Shute played 58.
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