Story: Golf

Early golf equipment (1st of 2)

Early golf equipment

This collection of early golf equipment held by the Otago Golf Club reveals how golf technology has advanced since the game began. From top are: a boy's driver, around 1820; driver, 1800s; baffie or baffing spoon, early 1800s; putter, 1820; driving iron, 1868; approaching cleek, 1868; heavy putter, around 1760; sand iron, 1741. The golf balls directly under the clubs include (from left): featherie (leather exterior filled with feathers), 1700–1850s; gutta-percha (tree rubber, hand-shaped), 1848–1870s; gutta (hand-hammered, chisel-patterned), 1850–1880s; bramble (machine gutta, pressed-iron mould), 1870–1890s; Haskell (stretched rubber around a hard core), 1899–1930s; modern ball 1.62” (solid core, plastic cover), 1930–1960 and modern ball 1.68” (solid core, polymer cover), 1960 onwards.

Using this item

Otago Golf Club
Photograph by Michael Greaves

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How to cite this page:

Garry Ahern, 'Golf - Golf’s rise in popularity', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 27 January 2022)

Story by Garry Ahern, published 5 Sep 2013, updated 1 Sep 2016