United States Golf Association Museum and Arnold Palmer Center for Golf History
The USGA Museum, located adjacent to USGA headquarters, has been renovated and expanded. The original Museum building was completed in 1919 and designed by noted American architect John Russell Pope. The renovated building features the Ben Hogan Room and Bob Jones Room, together with the addition of a new Arnold Palmer Room.
The expansion encompasses the new 16,000-square-foot Palmer Center, which comprises more than 5,000 square feet of public exhibition galleries, a new research room to facilitate access to the collections, and state-of-the-art storage areas that provide the proper climate and security for the long-term care of historical artifacts.
The Arnold Palmer Center for Golf History houses a collection of the nations most significant golf artifacts and documents, including hundreds of items never before displayed by the USGA. The new exhibitions in the Palmer Center present the games history in a unique and original way, placing it within the context of American social, cultural, and political history.
The Arnold Palmer Center for Golf History was so named to honor the enduring connection that Arnold Palmer represents between the game and the people who play and love the game. Never before has a USGA building been dedicated to a single individual.
The renovated USGA Museum features offices, meeting rooms, and galleries devoted to Bob Jones, Ben Hogan, and Arnold Palmer, chronicling each mans accomplishments on and off the course. It continues to serve as the main entrance for visitors.
The Hall of Champions celebrates every USGA champion and championship. The rotunda, illuminated by a clerestory, houses all 13 USGA championship trophies, while the name of each champion is inscribed on bronze panels that encircle the hall. The rooms quiet elegance allow visitors to reflect on the grandeur of USGA championship history. Also available throughout the main exhibition gallery are kiosks presenting a newly developed USGA championship database, allowing visitors to search every championship by player, date, and host site.
Permanent galleries in the Palmer Center revolve around six iconic moments pivotal to understanding the development of golf in America. These moments include:
in the 1954 U.S. Womens Open
The exhibitions in the new USGA Museum showcase more than 2,000 artifacts, more than twice the number on display in the old facility. The new facility displays many artifacts that have never been displayed before, representing the best of the collection.
During the three-year period the Museum was closed, the staff had an opportunity to closely examine each collection and select artifacts that best tell the USGA story. As a result, every part of the collection is represented. Historical documents, books, scrapbooks, photographs, film footage, clothing, clubs, balls, cigarette cards, posters, medals, and trophies are all integrated into the new displays.
Throughout the galleries, the Museums world-class collection is featured, including the clubs used by Francis Ouimet in the 1913 U.S. Open; Bob Joness famous putter, Calamity Jane II; Ben Hogans 1-iron from the 1950 U.S. Open; and artifacts from Tiger Woods, Payne Stewart, Annika Sorenstam, and many other stars of todays game.
Prior to being placed on display, many of the artifacts and documents were sent to conservation labs to be restored and properly treated.
The visitor experience is enhanced by a series of video presentations and interactive database, including:
Introductory Film: A seven-minute introductory film brings visitors into the world of USGA Championships, exploring the significance and challenge of the game at its highest level. The presentation is intended to inspire visitors and prepare them to experience the Hall of Champions and the main exhibition galleries.
Video presentations: Each gallery features a narrated and produced video segment to accompany the central story. These five-minute films discuss the iconic moments in greater detail, placing them in their proper historical context.
Championship Database: A database of records from every USGA championship is available at kiosks located throughout the exhibition galleries. Visitors can search every championship by player, host site, and date. Narratives, scores, and photographs from every championship since 1895 are included.
Video Jukeboxes: The Bob Jones Room and Arnold Palmer Room each feature a jukebox of video clips showing highlights from their careers both on and off the course. Visitors make selections from a touch-screen menu.
Arnold Palmer Portrait Interactive: Gratitude, a unique portrait by California artist James David Chase, is the focus of the Arnold Palmer Room. This remarkable image comprises more than 22,000 words said by or about Arnold Palmer. A touch-screen database allows visitors to explore the portrait in a variety of ways, as well as learn how the work was created.
A new Research Center creates an opportunity for visitors to view, study, and examine items from the collections in one area, facilitating an interdisciplinary approach to the study of golf history.
The Research Centers world-class holdings includes a library, photographic collection, film and video collection, and artifact collection. The collections document golf history and the USGAs role as the sports governing authority in the United States, its territories, and Mexico.
Visitors to the Museum have a unique opportunity to engage in an entertaining, participatory golf experience on a large putting green located behind the Museum. The putting green, inspired by the Himalayas putting course at St. Andrews, allows visitors to putt with replica antique clubs and balls, as well as modern equipment. Like the Himalayas at St. Andrews, this 16,000-square-foot green includes sizeable humps and swales designed to make the experience challenging and entertaining, as well as educational.
The Putting Course is scheduled to open in September 2008. Thereafter, it will be open during Museum hours from early April to late October.
On the grounds of the United States Golf Association headquarters;
77 Liberty Corner Road in Far Hills, N.J.
Hours of Operation
Tuesday to Sunday ' 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Closed Monday and major holidays
Research Center open weekdays; appointments encouraged:
Adults - $7
USGA Members - $5
Group Rate (10 or more) - $5
Children (13 to 17 years) - $3.50
Children (under 12) - Free
The historic John Russell Pope House and the Palmer Center encompass more than 33,000 square feet.
Dr. Rand Jerris, Director, USGA Museum
Doug Stark, Curator of Education and Outreach
Nancy Stulack, Librarian
Rosemary Maravetz, Collections Manager
Shannon Doody, Film and Video Archivist
Ellie Kaiser, Photo Archivist
Telephone (908) 234-2300
Fax (980) 470-5013
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