Road Hole Shorts

Golf Design, golf, golf, GOLF

Margaret Curtis — a woman for all seasons

by Mary Armstrong/For the Las Cruces Sun-News

Posted: 06/18/2010 12:00:00 AM MDT

This year’s Curtis Cup is especially poignant as it returns to Essex County Club in Manchester-by-the-sea, Massachusetts. Margaret was born in the Manchester-by-the-sea area, the youngest of ten children. Her father eventually served as the Assistant Secretary of the Treasury under William Howard Taft. Her cousin, Laurence Curtis, encouraged his entire family to take up the game before he served as the USGA President from 1897-98.

Margaret and her older sister Harriot began playing at a young age. Margaret quickly became a talented player and in 1897, at the age of 13 she qualified fourth for the US Women’s Amateur. Her sister won the championship in 1906 and then Margaret won it in 1907, 1911 and 1912. Margaret was also an excellent tennis player. In 1908 she won the U.S. Open doubles tennis championship with Evelyn Sears. She remains today as the only person to simultaneously hold the U.S. golf and tennis titles. Margaret was very fond of competing in Great Britain in the British Ladies Amateur Championship. Despite losing a five shot lead on the final hole in 1907 at Walton Heath, near London, she felt it very important to continue a competitive and social connection to the ladies in Britain.

Margaret attended Simmons College and was a student of their School of Social Work. This eventually led her to the Board of Directors of the Family Service Society for 51 years. During World War I, she went to Paris where she joined the Red Cross and served as its Director of the Bureau for Refugees.

Margaret and Harriot donated the Curtis Cup in 1932 for the biennial competition between the U.S. and Great Britain. She died on Christmas Eve, 1965. You can only imagine that she would have been overjoyed to see the Cup come to Essex County Club once again. For more information on Margaret and the Curtis Cup surf to Wikipedia.

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