Dorothy Campbell

Last updated

Dorothy Campbell
Campbell in 1909
Personal information
Full nameDorothy Campbell Hurd Howe
Born(1883-03-24)24 March 1883
North Berwick, Scotland
Died20 March 1945(1945-03-20) (aged 61)
Yemassee, South Carolina, U.S.
Sporting nationalityFlag of Scotland.svg  Scotland
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
SpouseJack V. Hurd
(m. 1913–1923; divorced)
Edward Howe
(m. 1937–1943; divorced)
Achievements and awards
World Golf Hall of Fame 1978 (member page)

Dorothy Lee Campbell (24 March 1883 – 20 March 1945) was a Scottish amateur golfer. Campbell was the first woman to win the American, British and Canadian Women's Amateurs. [1]


Early life

She was born into a golfing family in North Berwick, Midlothian, Scotland, to William Spink Campbell (1833–1900) and Emily Mary Tipper (1834–1923). [2] She began swinging golf clubs when she was just 18 months old. Within a few years she was competing with her sisters. She was a short but straight hitter of the ball who used an unorthodox hooker's grip. Later in her career she would adopt the standard "Vardon grip". [3] [4]

In 1896, at age 13, she joined the North Berwick Ladies Golf Club and had no difficulty holding her own against adult members. She was a pupil of golf professional Ben Sayers and learned to play the game over the North Berwick West Links. Her father died on 30 April 1900 [2] when she was 17 and by 1904 she was living with her mother at Inchgarry House, Links Road, North Berwick, where the Campbell family had enjoyed a number of summer holidays. [3]

1909 and 1911 British Ladies Amateurs

Campbell at the top of her backswing, c. 1912 DorothyCampbellHurd.JPG
Campbell at the top of her backswing, c.1912

In the British Ladies Amateur, contested at Royal Birkdale in 1909, Campbell forgot to report the result of her third round match—which she won on the 11th green—to the LGU officials who met to discuss whether she would be disqualified. She was allowed to continue in the championship which she won, beating Ireland's Florence Hezlet 4 and 3. That victory earned her an invitation to play in America and changed the course of her life. Subsequently, she returned to Britain only as a visitor. She moved to Canada in 1910 and three years later moved to the United States permanently and became an American citizen. [3]

In the 1911 British Ladies Amateur, she defeated Violet Hezlet, Florence's sister, in the final at Portrush.

Golf career accomplishments

Campbell prior to her 1909 victories
Ben Sayers, golf instructor of Campbell at North Berwick

Over the course of her career, she won 11 national amateur crowns between Great Britain, the United States, Canada, and Scotland, the last of which came in 1924 at the age of 41. She won over 700 first prizes during her golf career. Her short game, according to golf writer Colin Farquharson, was "out of this world". [3]

Mabel Stringer wrote of her short game, "Dorothy's best stroke was a run-up shot that she used from distances of up to 50 feet. She used her goose-necked mashie, which she nicknamed "Thomas", [1] closing the small clubface and hitting the ball on the downswing. At Augusta Country Club in 1926, she holed two chip shots and ended up having a record low of 19 putts for 18 holes, lowering Walter Travis's record by two strokes for putts in one round. In the final of the (US) North and South championship she beat her opponent by twice holing out from 40 yards". [3]

Marriages and children

She married Jack V. Hurd in Wentworth, Ontario, Canada on 11 February 1913. [2] Hurd was a steel magnate living in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and a member of Oakmont Country Club. She won many of her titles as Mrs. J. V. Hurd, but she and Hurd were divorced in 1923. [5] She married Edward Howe in 1937 and divorced again in 1943. [3] She had a son, Sigourney V. Hurd (1913–1986), with Jack Hurd. [3]

In her career she was also known in her lifetime as Dorothy Hurd, Mrs. J. V. Hurd and as Dorothy Howe. She has also been referred to by the portmanteau Dorothy Campbell Hurd Howe. [4]


She died in a railway accident on 20 March 1945, falling off a platform and into the path of an oncoming train. [3] [6] Her death certificate shows her full name to be Dorothy Lee Howe. The principal causes of death were a skull fracture and avulsion of her right arm. [2]


She was inducted to the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame and the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1978. [1] [3]

Notable wins

Further reading

Related Research Articles

The Curtis Cup is the best known team trophy for women amateur golfers, awarded in the biennial Curtis Cup Match. It is co-organised by the United States Golf Association and The R&A and is contested by teams representing the United States and "Great Britain and Ireland". The same two teams originally contested the Ryder Cup, but unlike that competition, the Curtis Cup has not widened the Great Britain and Ireland team to include all Europeans. Many women who have gone on to become stars of women's professional golf have played in the Curtis Cup.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Catriona Matthew</span> Scottish professional golfer

Catriona Isobel Matthew is a Scottish professional golfer who plays mainly on the US-based LPGA Tour and is also a member of the Ladies European Tour.

The Women's Amateur Championship, previously known as the Ladies' British Open Amateur Championship, was founded in 1893 by the Ladies' Golf Union. It is organised by The R&A, which merged with the Ladies' Golf Union in 2017. Until the dawn of the professional era in 1976, it was the most important golf tournament for women in Great Britain, and attracted players from continental Europe, North America, and the rest of the world. Along with the U.S. Women's Amateur, it is considered the highest honour in women's amateur golf.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Margaret Curtis</span> American tennis player and golfer

Margaret Curtis was an American golf and tennis champion and lifelong social worker.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Alexa Stirling</span> American-Canadian golfer

Alexa Stirling Fraser was an American-Canadian amateur golfer. She won the U.S. Women's Amateur golf championship in 1916, 1919, and 1920. She also won the Canadian Women's Amateur title in 1920 and 1934.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">May Hezlet</span> British golfer and sportswriter

Mary Elizabeth Linzee "May" Hezlet was a British amateur golfer and sports writer. She has been called "probably Ireland's greatest woman golfer".

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Florence Hezlet</span> Irish golfer

Florence Eugenia Hezlet was an Irish amateur golfer who played in the early 20th century.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Elsie Grant Suttie</span> Scottish golfer

Elsie Grant Suttie was a Scottish amateur golfer who played in the late 19th century into the mid-20th century. In 1910, Suttie won the British Ladies Amateur Golf Championship at Westward Ho! – played on the Royal North Devon Golf Club course – defeating 18-year-old Lily Moore from Olton Golf Club in the West Midlands 6 and 4 in the final.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Sybil Whigham</span> Scottish golfer

Sybil Whigham, also seen as Sibyl Whigham and later as Sybil Nicholson, was a Scottish golfer.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Florence Harvey</span> Canadian golfer and WWI ambulance driver

Florence Lyle Harvey was a Canadian golfer, and an ambulance driver in Serbia during World War I. She was inducted into the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame in 1972.

Ladies' British Open Amateur Stroke Play Championship was founded in 1969 by the Ladies' Golf Union of Great Britain.

Linn Maria Grant is a Swedish professional golfer who plays on the LPGA Tour and Ladies European Tour. As an amateur, she won the 2017 Ladies' British Open Amateur Stroke Play Championship and was in contention at the 2018 and 2020 U.S. Women's Open.

Jean Macalister Donald was a Scottish golfer. She won the Scottish Women's Amateur Championship three times and played in the Curtis Cup in 1948, 1950 and 1952. She turned professional at the start of 1954 following a change in the rules regarding amateur status.

Mary Allan Graham was an amateur golfer. She won the Womens Amateur Championship at Aberdovey in 1901 and the Scottish Women's Amateur Championship in 1904. Born in England to Scottish parents, she represented Scotland in international competitions.

Alexandra Malcolm Glover was an amateur golfer. She won the inaugural Scottish Women's Amateur Championship, played on the Old Course at St Andrews in June 1903.

Emily Maud Titterton was an amateur golfer. She won the Womens Amateur Championship on the Old Course at St Andrews in 1908.

Alice Marion Kennion was an English amateur golfer. She was a surprise winner of the 1906 Womens Amateur Championship at Burnham & Berrow Golf Club. She was the first married woman to win the championship.

Bertha Mildred Thompson was an English amateur golfer. She won the 1905 Womens Amateur Championship at Royal Cromer and reached the final the following year. She reached the quarter-finals in 1900, 1909 and 1911. She was a regular player for England in international matches between 1899 and 1911, only missing the 1910 Women's Home Internationals, when she withdrew. The official Home Internationals started in 1905 and although she played in the event six times, she was only in the winning team once, in her final appearance in 1911.

Doris Elaine Chambers was an English amateur golfer. She won the Womens Amateur Championship in 1923, having been a semi-finalist in 1909. She also reached the semi-finals of the English Women's Amateur Championship in 1926. She represented England in the Women's Home Internationals nine times between 1906 and 1925. She was the British Curtis Cup captain in 1934, 1936 and 1948.

Elaine Farquharson-Black is a Scottish amateur golfer. She won the Helen Holm Scottish Women's Open Championship in 1987, the Scottish Women's Amateur Championship in 1990 and reached the final of the 1989 Ladies' British Open Amateur Championship. She played in the Curtis Cup in 1990 and 1992 and was the non-playing captain in 2016 and 2018.


  1. 1 2 3 4 "Dorothy Campbell profile". World Golf Hall of Fame. Retrieved 31 December 2017.
  2. 1 2 3 4 "Dorothy Campbell Ancestry". Retrieved 31 December 2017.[ unreliable source? ]
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Farquharson, Colin. "Dorothy Campbell, North Berwick's first famous golfing daughter". Kirkwood Golf. Retrieved 31 December 2017.
  4. 1 2 Kelley, Brent. "Dorothy Campbell". Retrieved 31 December 2017.
  5. Davidson, Jack (15 June 2013). "Dorothy Campbell: Scotland's own Merion heroine". The Scotsman . Retrieved 31 December 2017.
  6. "On this day, In 1945 Dorothy Campbell, 1st woman to win both British, U.S., & Canadian Amateurs is killed by a train". Golf History Today. Retrieved 31 December 2017.