This is a fabulous track iron. The head is small, round, thick, concave, and scarcely bigger than a golf ball. The shaft is 39 inches long and the thick hosel is 5 1/2 inches long. The sheepskin grip is original. The overall weight of this club is 19.8 ounces, which is exceptionally heavy, which means this tiny head is thick and the hosel stout. When holding this club in ones hands, it's clear that it could cause great damage on a golf course. It's definitely the club of choice if an intruder breaks in!
On the back of the head is a small round sticker that reads "The Frank Hardison Collection. Frank was one of the greatest collectors of the second half of the 2oth century. He built his collection beginning in the 1950s, when he would buy long nose clubs for a song at flea markets in the UK. He was one of the two main principles who purchased the Harry B Wood Collection in 1987. Hardison only recently died, at age 101. He is missed by those who knew him, who are the better for knowing him.
Frank, at age 99, sold this club to the consignor and included a letter that documents an important part of the club's provanance. Hardison received this club as a gift from MacDonald Smith, the former PGA Tour player with 25 victories to his credit, including five Los Angeles Opens and three Western Opens, which span from 1912 to 1933. Hardison's letter will accompany this lot to its next owner.
In his letter, Hardison dates this club to 1840, and it may well be that old. The auctioneer calls it c.1850 just to be conservative in a collecting world that all to often over exaggerates.
The ball in the images is shown for perspective and is not part of this lot.