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Dorothy Campbell

By

Dorothy Campbell Hurd Howe

Dorothy Campbell, a k a Dorothy Campbell Hurd Howe.

Photo courtesy of the World Golf Hall of Fame; used with permission
Dorothy Cambpell was a pioneer in women's golf in the early 20th century, winning the top tournaments available in every country she called home.

Date of birth: March 24, 1883
Place of birth: Edinburgh, Scotland
Died: March 20, 1945
Also Known As: Dorothy Campbell played under several different names because of two marriages and divorces. She is sometimes referred to as Dorothy Campbell Hurd Howe and competed, at various times, as Dorothy Hurd, Dorothy Campbell Hurd, Mrs. J.V. Hurd, and Dorothy Howe.

Tour Victories:

0 (No women's golf tours existed in Campbell's era.)

Major Championships:

Amateur - 5
• U.S. Women's Amateur: 1909, 1910, 1924
• British Ladies Amateur: 1909, 1911

Awards and Honors:

Member, World Golf Hall of Fame

Trivia:

• Dorothy Campbell was the first golfer to win the U.S. Women's Amateur and British Ladies Amateur in the same year (1909).

• Holds the records as the oldest winner of the U.S. Women's Amateur (41 in 1924) and for the longest gap between wins (15 years).

• During a round at Augusta Country Club in 1926, Campbell played 18 holes taking only 19 putts. She holed two chip shots during the round. The putter she used was one she nicknamed "Stella," and had been using since 1909.

Dorothy Campbell Biography:

Dorothy Campbell, the World Golf Hall of Fame says, was the "first female international star." She won titles in her native Scotland; she won titles after moving to Canada; she won titles after moving to the United States. She won titles everywhere she lived, and for a long time.

Campbell grew up in North Berwick, Scotland, near the famed West Links (home to golf's original redan hole), and first picked up a golf club at just 18 months old.

Her father and eight uncles played, as did six sisters. Campbell's first big win would come on the West Links in the 1905 Scottish Ladies Championship.

Campbell went on to win 11 national amateur titles total. In 1909, she won both the British Ladies Amateur and the U.S. Women's Amateur, the first to do so in the same year. She repeated as U.S. champ the next year, and as British champ in 1911. And from 1910-12 she won three straight Canadian women's amateur titles.

Campbell moved to Canada in 1910, then in 1913 moved to the U.S. when she married.

After marrying and having a child, Campbell all but gave up golf. But when Campbell divorced in 1923, she returned to the game. But changes to her game were in order.

Campbell had always played holding the club in her palms and with her right thumb wrapped under the club, according to her World Golf Hall of Fame profile. She made a sweeping swing with stiff wrists. She knew she needed to update her game if she was to compete in the 1920s, when top women golfers were transitioning to more modern swings. So in 1923, she spent 10 months totally reworking her game, adopting the Vardon Overlap grip and changing her swing.

It paid off when she again won the U.S. Women's Amateur, this time at age 41 in 1924. Her last big tournament win came in 1938 at the U.S. Women's Senior Amateur Championship.

Campbell was a short driver, but a remarkable short-game player. She once played Augusta Country Club taking just 19 putts, and was particularly known for run-up shots from about 50 yards and in.

She was killed at age 61 when her car was struck by a train in South Carolina. Campbell was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1978.

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