Perhaps the greatest golf story in our country’s history is the one of the teenage boy who shocked the world by winning the US Open – becoming the first American born golfer to win a Major Championship. The only problem is that almost all golf fans believe that boy to be Francis Ouimet, which is not true. Francis Ouimet’s 1913 victory was preceded by that of John McDermott, who won the US Open back to back in 1911 and 1912. McDermott was not only the first American born golfer to win the US Open, he was also younger than Ouimet when he won.
But unlike Ouimet, there would be no Disney movie made about McDermott, as there was no fairy tale ending.
While Francis Ouimet would essentially become the Ambassador of golf in this country, John McDermott’s life unraveled at the age of 23 due to mental illness. Starting in 1914, McDermott spent the rest of his life in mental hospitals, group homes, or living in the care of relatives. He would never play competitive golf again.
John McDermott Studio Photograph with US Open Trophy
Offered here is a rare original photograph of 1911 and 1912 US Open Champion John McDermott posing with the US Open trophy. This 4x6” crystal clear studio portrait of McDermott is in high grade condition. Included is a newspaper article about McDermott with same seated image.