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The Golden Age of Golf Design

Shackelford, Geoff (editor)

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ISBN 10: 1886947317 / ISBN 13: 9781886947313
Published by Sleeping Bear Press, Chelsea, MI, 1999
Condition: Near Fine Hardcover
From Fireside Angler (Smithtown, NY, U.S.A.)

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[4], 211 pp. Book: Previous owner's gift inscription on FFEP. Dustjacket: One very small nick mark on spine, one very tiny nick on one corner. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Bookseller Inventory # 810026

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Golden Age of Golf Design

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press, Chelsea, MI

Publication Date: 1999

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition:Near Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good +

Edition: First Edition.

About this title


The years between 1910 and 1937 will always be known as the “golden age of golf design.” The reason is because many of the greatest course architects in the history of the game were all at work during this era, and a number of America’s most famous layouts were created. Geoff Shackelford’s The Golden Age of Golf Designis an insightful analysis of those revered courses and the talented men that designed them. The list of architects working during the Golden Age is a “Who’s Who” of golf — including Ross, MacKenzie, Tillinghast, Crump, Raynor and Wilson. Incredibly, the layouts they built back then — often with only bare hands and horses to do the work — annually make up the majority of today’s Top 100 Courses in America.


One of the great mysteries of the royal and ancient game is how good golf courses leave players convinced they've just spent four hours either floating in heaven or stuck in the bedlam of a Hieronymous Bosch painting. A golf course is not a random creation; the best are truly works of art, and it's remarkable how many of the best were coaxed from the landscape between 1911 and 1937. This was, as the title of this lovely celebration proclaims, The Golden Age of Golf Design, a time when the giants of the craft--A.W. Tillinghast, Marion Hollins, and Alistair McKenzie, to name a few--were in full flourish. Their courses--Riviera, Seminole, and Augusta National among them--dominate any list of the best in the world.

Through deft use of archival photographs, sketches, written citations by the architects themselves, and a series of evocative watercolors by golf pro Mike Miller, Geoff Shackelford aims for why these courses continue to beckon, challenge, impress, and endure. His shot is right on target. He breaks down the designers into their various schools of thought, tracing their import, evolution, and influence. Next he introduces the individual architects themselves through short career summaries accompanied by details about their writings, golfing skills, design theories, characteristics, and, of course, a list of their legacies. Best of all are the wonderful old photos of great holes, many accompanied by snippets of design philosophy from the creating wizard. It adds up to a book golfers should savor--and study. Knowledge is power on the course, and understanding the hows and whys of the demonic challenges that designers subtly and not-so-subtly integrate into their layouts can mean the difference between a scratch handicap and scratching your head in bewilderment. --Jeff Silverman

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