A Look at the First Putters

In Scotland’s Middle Ages, the genesis of golf saw the first putters come to life. Quite simple, they were. Almost like sticks, primarily crafted from wood, these primordial putters earned the name “cleeks.” The term “putter” itself owes its origin to the old Scottish vernacular. The word “put” meant to push – a fitting verb for what a putter was designed to do: guide the ball, with a gentle nudge, into the waiting hole.

As the 19th century approached its twilight, golfers began experimenting. Wood gave way to iron in their putters, a significant leap in innovation for the game. The dawn of the 20th century welcomed giants like PING and Titleist into the fold. Their contributions? Advanced, meticulously designed putters that refined the craft. The familiar putters of today, characterized by a shorter shaft and a flat face, emerged during this transformative period.

Here’s something to mull over: despite our inclination to christen a “first” putter, the specifics of its design remain cloaked in mystery. We’re peering far back into a time that predates the standardization of golf equipment. The evolution of golf and its instruments reflect the beauty of the game – a journey from humble, simple origins to a sophisticated blend of art and strategy. It’s a testament to the timeless nature of this sport, where the drive to perfect the push of the ball remains as vibrant as ever.

An old putter in use: