Arago: American Sports Issue: Ouimet

Up
American Sports Issue: Ouimet

The Postal Service issued the 25-cent Francis Ouimet (1893-1967) commemorative stamp on June 13, 1988, in Brookline, Massachusetts. The dedication ceremony was held at the Country Club, the site of 1988 US Open championship, which marked the 75th anniversary of Ouimet's historic triumph there. 1988 was the centennial year of golf.

In 1913, the 20-year-old former caddie and son of a coachman became the first amateur and only the second Native American to win the US Open. His extraordinary triumph triggered a golfing boom in the United States, capturing the public's imagination and transforming golf into a front-page sport. That historic victory over two greats of British golf changed forever Americans' perception of golf as a pastime reserved for the privileged.

Ouimet preferred not to turn professional but continued to compete as an amateur, winning the 1914 and 1931 US Amateur titles. He was a member of the first twelve Walker Cup teams, serving six times as the captain. In 1951, he became captain of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, the first non-Briton ever to serve in that capacity.

Artist M. Gregory Rudd of Trumbull, Connecticut, based the smiling portrait of Francis Ouimet in the top half of the design on photographs taken at the time of his victory in the 1913 US Open. The lower portion shows Ouimet following through a swing on his way to victory in the 1931 US Amateur championship. A group of spectators follows his shot from the background.

The stamps were printed in the photogravure process by the American Bank Note Company and issued in panes of fifty.

Reference:

Postal Bulletin (May 12, 1988).


Additional Records