Specializing in Fine Antique Golf Clubs and Historic Memorabilia

Lot # 96: c. 1890 Bussey & Pinder's Steel Socket Thistle Putter w/Multipiece Head and Sewn Grip

Starting Bid: $150.00

Bids: 5 (Bid History)

Time Left: Auction closed
Lot / Auction Closed

This lot is closed. Bidding is not allowed.

Item was in Auction "Spring 2020",
which ran from 3/9/2020 2:30 PM to
3/29/2020 1:45 AM

William Bussey and Joseh Pinder, both from London, received a British patent (No., 16,593) dated Oct. 23, 1890, that covered this putter head made with a gunmetal blade and steel hosel. This same patent, the seventh ever granted for a golf club, also covers the sewn grip on this club. 

According to Bussey and Pinder's patent, the hosel is made as a hollow tube. An approximately 3/8" high extension (boss) atop a very short "neck portion" of the blade fits inside the lower end of the hosel.  Once joined, the head and hosel are brazed toether. The shaft is then placed into the regular hollow portion of the hosel where it is "secured therein by means of cement, glue, or other otherwise."

The top of the hosel on this putter has been cleaned, possibly in tandem with resetting the pin to tighten the 33" shaft, which is original. What is interesting is the top of the hosel appears to actually be steel, not iron. (The light oxidation lower on the hosel makes the hosel appear to be iron.) 

The 15-inche-long sewn grip, as shown in the image, is all there and in nice condition. It consists of a rectangular piece of leather sewn lengthwise into position on the shaft. This took some engineering of sorts to accomplish, but it made for a long lasting grip that would not come loose and unwind as could happen with a wound grip.  

"Putter" is stamped in tiny letters on the shaft, just below the grip. This is an original stamp to the club.  The writing on the back of the head, "Bussey & Co, London, Thistle, Patent Steel Socket," is mostly strong, just a few letters are faint. The gunmetal blade is in good condition, not all dented up as often happens with gunmetal putters due to the softer-than-iron nature of gunmetal. Overall this putter is a solid example, and of the tens of thousands of golf club patents in existence today, this putter was produced under the 7th golf club patent ever issued—which makes this club one of the first clubs ever produced under a patent in the history of the game.  Now that is great history, not just great creativity!

Views: 109