Date: Wed 25 Sep 2013

Tom Morris of St. Andrews: The Colossus of Golf 1821-1908

By David Malcom and Peter M Crabtree. Published by Birlinn, 2012. Born in a humble weaver's cottage in 1821, Tom Morris, more than anyone, before or since, in large measure made golf what it is today. The record of Tom and his prodigiously gifted son, Tommy, is astonishing. Between them they won eight of the first twelve Open Championships and are still respectively the oldest and youngest players to have won the Open.

Tom Morris of St. Andrews

Tom relinquished his Open title to 18-year old Tommy in 1868, taking second place that year - a family performance unlikely ever to be repeated. Tom's 13-stroke victory in 1862 remains the largest winning margin and Tommy's four Open Championship wins in succession are unequalled.

These exploits are only half the story. Tom was the first golf professional, arguably the first to design and build a course (Prestwick) from scratch, and his development of the Old Course at St Andrews made it the most famous golfing arena in the world. His life was an extraordinary blend of triumph and tragedy, marked by the early death of his son Tommy aged only 24 years. Revered by his contemporaries, Tom Morris remains one of the most iconic figures in all sport and his legacy continues to inspire and guide the development of golf today.

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