Cleburne Times-Review, Cleburne, TX

John Watson

February 26, 2012

John Watson: A golf legend

Dublin’s Ben Hogan made a name for himself

 

Ben Hogan, just the name conjures up images of some of golf’s greatest legends: Ben Hogan, Byron Nelson and Sam Snead. Just a little interesting trivia; all three of these great players were born in 1912. There will likely be a centennial celebration of this trio this year.

When we think of Ben Hogan, we think of Fort Worth, the Colonial Country Club and Shady Oaks Country Club, which was Hogan’s home club. He lived in Fort Worth for many years and that is where, in 1953, he started the Ben Hogan Company to manufacture golf clubs because he was dissatisfied with the clubs he had been using.   

However, Dublin is Ben Hogan’s hometown. Ben was born in August 1912, the third child of Chester and Clara Hogan. Chester was a second generation blacksmith and worked at the family business with his father. Young Ben spent many hours at the blacksmith shop with his father and grandfather.

Ben, his brother Royal and sister Princess attended the Dublin School until 1921, when demand for the blacksmith trade started to diminish due to the increasing use of the automobile. 

The Hogan family then moved to Fort Worth in search of a new way of life. However, the tragic death of Chester in February 1922 forced the young Hogan children to find new ways to help support the family. Ben and Royal sold newspapers at first; then Ben heard that he could make 65 cents a game caddying at the Glen Garden Country Club which was just a few miles from their house, just a good walking distance.

While at Glen Garden, Ben met and caddied for Marvin Leonard, owner and operator of the largest department store in North Texas and later, founder of Colonial Country Club. It was Leonard who encouraged Ben to pursue his growing love and interest in golf; and also supported Ben in three failed attempts to join the fledging PGA tour between 1930 and 1938. 

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John Watson
  • 5 Museum Bldg Front.jpg John Watson: A golf legend

    Ben Hogan, just the name conjures up images of some of golf’s greatest legends: Ben Hogan, Byron Nelson and Sam Snead. Just a little interesting trivia; all three of these great players were born in 1912. There will likely be a centennial celebration of this trio this year.

    February 26, 2012 7 Photos

  • 1 Sandra Smith.JPG John Watson: Milford, Texas

    Milford is a small town on Texas 77 in the southwest corner of Ellis County, midway between Hillsboro and Waxahachie. Like many small Texas towns, it is rich in history.

    December 18, 2011 10 Photos

  • 4 Log Cabin.JPG John Watson: A sticky wicket

    As most of you know, things do not always go as planned. We recently met two of our grandsons in Stephenville to visit the Chicken House Flea Market together. We went on Sunday afternoon so they would both be off work. After arriving at the flea market we realized we had gone on the wrong weekend, as no one was there.

    November 21, 2011 5 Photos

  • 6 Big Rocker.jpg Decade of design

    November 6, 2011 3 Photos

  • 5 Historic Tree Trail.JPG John Watson: Clark Gardens adds scarecrow trails for October

    The Clark Gardens are located on 35 acres of land a few miles east of Mineral Wells on Maddux Road. On the first weekend in October, they have had a fall festival at the gardens for several years. This year’s festival was billed as the “Spiciest Festival Around,” complete with a chili cook-off and salsa tasting. However, something new was added this year.

    October 9, 2011 5 Photos

  • 2 USS Beale.jpg John Watson: Taking the night train to Galveston a memorable experience

    What could be more interesting to a teenager than spending a few days each summer on the beach at Galveston? I got to spend my time on the beach back in the 1950s.

    September 11, 2011 5 Photos

  • 4 Texas Traveler.JPG John Watson: A pressing matter

    I recently received some pictures via email from Diane Hall at the Times-Review with the subject, “What the heck is it?” Someone had brought the pictures to the newspaper office enquiring about what was in the pictures. He had taken the pictures to Layland Museum, and no one there knew what it was.

    August 28, 2011 5 Photos

  • 3 Grandview Main Street.JPG John Watson: The red brick road

    July 31, 2011 5 Photos

  • Thursday rodeo dedicated to God

    Thursday night’s PRCA performance has been dedicated as “God and Country Night,” with the assistance of Pastor Russ Weaver and Shepherd’s Valley Cowboy Church in Egan.

    June 10, 2011

  • Joshua man jailed for DWI third or more

    A 59-year-old Joshua man was in Johnson County Law Enforcement Center Monday on charges of DWI third or more with open container.

    April 26, 2011

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