Hackbarth putters were made with either a
lead or brass insert inlaid in the sole. This example has the brass
insert. Otto Hackbarth, a club professional from St. Louis
who produced his club under a 1901 patent issued to Isaac Palmer, began
to advertise his putter in 1910. Hackbarth stated that the split
hosel kept the club head from turning when
striking the ball and thus provided more accurate putting. The best
endorsement for this club came when Chick Evans, the 1916 Us Open and Amateur champion, used it
with great success.
Because these putters are made primarily from aluminum they were easy to dent and ding. This example, however is in beautiful condition, well
above average. Both lengths of the
fork are solid—with no cracks as is sometimes found on other examples. The left-hand face is stamped with the initials of the owner, "SES."
The large original leather-wapped pistol grip is a wonderful feature rarely found on this putter. This particular pistol grip was made with exquisite craftsmanship. The large wood dowel used to build up the grip is seamless for all intents and purposes where it connects to the shaft proper, and the leather wrap is without flaw despite the different diameters it covers. .
Hackbarth putters originally sold through the mail for
three dollars, a far cry from the prices they have fetched in recent
years. They are highly visual and distinctive, and make a
great addition to any club collection.
This club is shown to the far left in the second row of the accompanying group picture. For more on this club, see TCA2: V1 p 214-215