Scholarship of Discovery
The Roaring Twenties was the most colorful decade in American history, as well as an era of intense, rapid change. A booming economy produced millionaires in every walk of life and helped fuel a Golden Age of Sports. Golf thrived and changed with the new prosperity. The game's stars, like the decade in which they played, were some of the brightest ever, but none of them outshone Walter C. Hagen. A true original, "Sir Walter" perfectly suited his times. Hagen was the first "unattached" touring pro, as well as the first player to dress flashily during competition, to endorse a matched set of irons, to hire a full-time agent-and to make a million dollars in golf. In competition Hagen was the first American-born player to win the British Open, the first U.S. Ryder Cup captain (and competitor), and the first player to win the same major championship four years in a row. Walter Hagen embodied change.
Lowe, Stephen. "Walter Hagen: Baron of the Golden Age." Golf's Greatest Eighteen: Today's Top Golf Writers Debate and Rank the Sport's Greatest Champions. Ed. David Mackintosh. Chicago: Contemporary Books, 2003.
Permission granted by David Mackintosh, editor of the book in which this chapter appears.