The Scottish Parliament under King James II prohibits golf because it
interferes with archery training.
Though most historians agree that golf was played in one form or another for
three hundred years prior, 1552 is the first written evidence of the game being
played at St. Andrews.
Mary Queen of Scots plays an informal game of golf a day after her husband,
Lord Darnley, was murdered. Early 1600s
A new golf ball called the feathery is created, consisting of a leather
cover stuffed with goose and chicken feathers. It replaces the previous ball,
which was made of boxwood. The feathery is more expensive than a set of golf
A form of miniature golf appears in New Netherland, where a small ball is
putted around a green with a crooked club.
The first rules of golf are created for a competition at the Leith Links in
The golfers at St. Andrews organize themselves into a club.
The Old Course at St. Andrews is changed from 22 to 18 holes. That number
becomes the standard for courses around the globe.
In his New York City Gazette, James Rivington announces the availability of
golf equipment. Both clubs and balls are offered to the general public.
England's King William IV declares that the St. Andrews Society is to become
the Royal and Ancient Golf Club.
The gutta-percha ball emerges. Gutta-percha is a moldable substance,
originating from the milk in Far Eastern gum trees. The new ball is easier to
produce than the feathery, and is also more affordable.
John Campbell Stewart breaks James Durham's 86-year-old course record of 94
at St. Andrews.
Scotland's Allan Robertson becomes the first player to break 80 on the Old
Eight professional golfers compete in the first British Open at Prestwick.
Old Tom Morris hits the opening shot and Willie Park, Sr. wins the 36-hole
competition with 174 strokes.
At age 46, Tom Morris, Sr. becomes the oldest British Open champion.
Tom Morris wins his third British Open Championship in a row.
Scotsman John G. Reid founds the Saint Andrews Golf Club in Yonkers, New
York. The six-hole course serves as the true beginning of American golf.
Shinnecock Hills Golf Club in Southhampton, New York, becomes the first
American golf course to have a clubhouse.
The United States Golf Association (USGA) is formed.
The Chicago Golf Club, founded by Charles Blair Macdonald, becomes the first
18-hole course in America.
Charles Blair MacDonald wins the first official U.S. Amateur, held at the
Newport Golf Club in Rhode Island.
At age 19, Horace Rawlins is the first and youngest player ever to win the
United States Open.