World record price for golf ball sold at Boston auction

Golf Ball RecordA new auction world record has been achieved by Bonhams & Butterfields at its first US Golf Sale, held yesterday (5 May 2006) at the Larz Anderson Auto Museum, in Brookline Massachusetts. The dollar coin sized Bramble-patterned ball fetched a staggering US $10,516 and was bought by the renowned Minikahada Golf Club, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

The golf ball gains its Bramble-patterned name for its distinct loganberry-like pimpled surface and carries the name of the Minikahada Golf Club on its poles. Several examples were made in 1898 to mark the opening that year of the famous Club in Minneapolis and this remains the only Minikahada golf ball to have survived the Club’s 108 year history.

Bonhams & Butterfields’ Golf specialist, Kevin McGimpsey, says: “I’m delighted that this ball is returning to its birthplace. It’s a unique item of golfing history.”

Legendary US golfer Bobby Jones (1902-1971) won the US Amateur at the Minikahada Golf Club in 1927. Several other items associated with the all-American golfing hero were sold yesterday, including a “Publicity Manual and Handbook for University and College Golf Teams” that was written by Jones in 1936, which fetched US $2,629 – more than three times its pre-sale estimate. A set of his signature irons also sold for US $1,554.

The name “Bobby Jones” is synonymous with great golf. He was the amateur golfer who never took a lesson yet the Oxford Companion to World Sports and Games describes him as “probably the greatest player the game has known”. His accomplishments cannot be matched in the world of golf, nor can his contribution to the sport be underestimated. From 1923 to 1930 he won 13 major championships and remains the only player to win all four majors in the same year. In 1934, Jones went on to found the US Masters tournament, held annually in Augusta, Georgia.

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