1930 Carolinas Open played at PPCC

At left, a player putts on the ninth green. The cars in the background are from around 1930, providing evidence that these photos were taken at the 1930 Carolinas Open.

Lucky Strike cigarettes must have been part of the welcome package at the tournament. If you can identify any of the ladies and gentlemen in the photos, please email ppcc@me.com.

  Note: After corresponding with Maggie Crichton, daughter of tournament winner Marshall Crichton, she says none of the photos are of her father. Maggie works at Hope Valley CC in Durham.

The following accounts are from the Reidsville Review leading up to and following the Carolinas Open which was played at Pennrose Park Country Club on Sept. 24-26, 1930.

Sept. 11, 1930

The club feels that it has been signally honored and those golfers who have seen and played on the wonderful Pennrose course feel that the association is lucky indeed to find a golf course that is in the perfect condition that Pennrose is for this event.

Reidsville is in the Piedmont section of the state and one would naturally expect a rolling course but the newcomers will have a very pleasant surprise when they tackle the Pennrose layout. Carved from densely wooded hills, the terrain is such that one could easily imagine himself way back in the western part of Carolina playing a course built on the rugged slopes of the Smokey Mountains. The fairways are narrow and undulating, not merely rolling, but they have twists and dips that make a golf ball do more tricks than a monkey on a stick unless shots are played straight and accurately. The greens are large and spacious but like the fairways they too are undulating, making it necessary for a golfer to study the particular geography of each hole before he putts. All in all, Pennrose is a course laid out and built under the supervision of that greatest of all golf architects, Donald Ross, and is a test for the finest of shot makers. Its holes vary in length from 139 to 547 and in one round of golf the best golfers will find use for almost every club in the bag not excepting his niblick for the course is well trapped both on the fairways and around the greens.

The condition of the Pennrose course is perfect in spite of adverse weather conditions during the current golfing season. Having its own water system – the water coming from one of the creeks that make golf harder here, the fairways and greens have been kept well watered whenever necessary.

The Carolinas Open, considered the premier golfing event of the two states, comes to Reidsville on Sept. 24-26. It will be preceded by the customary pro-amateur tournament, which will be held on Wednesday afternoon. The cash prizes are larger than ever before in the history of the association - $300 is offered for first price, $150 as second prize and $100 as third prize with other prizes for golfers finishing as low as eighth place. For the amateurs, handsome trophies will be given for first, second and third place.

The entry list will be long and will contain some of the finest golfers in the south. Among those who will enter is Tully D. Blair of Greensboro, the defending champion.

Quoting Ramon Atkins, the Sedgefield sharpshooter who together with Andy Merilees and Dugan Aycock of High Point, played the course Wednesday.

“There are going to be some surprised fellows when they come to Pennrose. Surprised to find such a beautiful course, at the sporty layout, its perfect condition and surprised at their scores when they finish a round.”

Monday, Sept. 21

Everyone agrees that golfers who have never played Pennrose are going to be surprised at their scores.  Sub-par scores will be scarce for Pennrose is a hard par 74 with narrow fairways and no end of trouble for the golfer who is wild off the tee. They are full of twists and dips and one is forced to keep his tee shots straight down the alley if he wishes to keep his score down.

The greens are large and of such size that shots must be played dead to the pin. A golfer playing random shots to the green may finds his ball on but a long, long ways from the cup.

All and all the visiting golfers will find use for every club in their bag from the driver to their trick putters not excepting “sand blasters” and “dynamiters.”

Wednesday, Sept. 23

Many golfers who are here getting familiar with the Pennrose course are loud in their praise of the links, the greens especially, but they voiced objection to he midsummer weather that prevails.

It has had no effect on the course, for day and night the maintenance force has been working steadily to keep both fairways and greens in condition. Pennrose has its own water system so sprinkler heads have been wide open over the greens and that portion of the fairways were play is more frequent is getting its share of water.

Friday, Sept. 25, 1930

Nothing but words of praise greet the Pennrose Country club owner and operating officials of the golf course which come from those who are participating in the Carolinas Open here this week.

Sept. 28, 1930

Marshall Crichton, freckle-faced Durham professional, blazed his way to the Carolinas Open golf title here Saturday, an honor he now holds for the fourth time since 1926.

Sending his shots with deadly precision from the tees and up the fairways on the Pennrose Park Country Club course, he stopped his three-day 72-hole score at 301 to succeed Tully Blair, Greensboro amateur, as wearer of last year’s crown. Crichton’s other wins were in 1926, 1927 and 1929.

Andy Gray, rangy Wilmington professional, who topped the field at the end of 36 holes, placed second when he added an 82 in a downpour of rain to his previous 227 for 309.

Freddie Webb, 18-year-old form Shelby, led the simon pures with a 324 total and Johnny Johnson of Lumberton and Bill Deuschle of Winston-Salem ran second and third among the amateurs.

The approaches of Crichton were excellent and his putting was good. He sent his tee shots spinning straight over the fairways where a hook or slice meant trouble on this pine-fringed course. The 39-year-old Durham man’s consistent playing under a scorching sun and rain-laden clouds paved the way for his triumph over golfers from North and South Carolina.

Fifty-five started the quest for the title and $300 first money Thursday. Eighteen holes of qualifying play Thursday and Friday reduced the number to the select group who started out Saturday morning on the final 36 holes.

Following Gray came Pete Webb of Shelby with a 311 total, good for third place. Webb nosed out Clarence Owen, blonde Greenville golfer, who carded 315 for fourth place.

Scores were good considering conditions. Thursday was a sweltering day while Friday a cooling breeze brought relief. On the sixth, seventh and eighth greens Saturday afternoon, rain came down in torrents and most players used mashie and niblicks in putting. Score of the final 18 holes rocketed as a result of slow greens.

Others in the field included Dugan Aycock of High Point, Bennie Goodes of Burlington, Palmer Maples of Rocky Mount, John Bulla of Burlington, Purvis Ferree of Pinehurst, Charlie Farlow of Anderson SC and Allen Gwyn of Reidsville.

Some of the final scores:

Marshall Crichton, Durham 71-76-73-81 -- 301

Andy Gray, Wilmington 309

Pete Webb, Shelby   311

Clarence Owen  315

George Slingerland, Greensboro  316

Arthur Ham, Charlotte   316

Palmer Maples  321


Ben Goodes, Burlington  336

Note: The Carolinas Open returned to PPCC in 1945. Orville White was the winner.


List of Carolinas Open winners:  Carolinas Open - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Marshall Crichton won 1949 Senior PGA Championship  1949 Senior PGA Championship Details - PGA Media Guide

Return to History:  HISTORY