Actual Masters Champion's
Green Jacket from Doug Ford
know the story - Masters Champions are only allowed to keep the Green Jackets
for one year, and must return to Augusta National with their Green Jacket the
following year when they defend their Masters title. Other than that, the Green
Jackets are not to leave the premises. There are no exceptions. That oft-told
story is true. Well, sorta.
Augusta National Golf Club was not always so protective over the Green Jackets.
At least not until 1962, when Gary Player famously balked at the new rule
requiring the return of his Green Jacket that he received for winning the 1961
Masters Tournament. Since that time, virtually every other Masters Champion has
honored Augusta's strict Green Jacket policy (The Standard Observer
reported in 2002 that Seve Ballesteros also refused to return his Green Jacket
to Augusta National).
But the part of the story that is
rarely told is what happened to the Green Jackets that were awarded from 1949
(when the first Green Jacket was presented to Sam Snead) to 1960 (the year
before the new Green Jacket rules were put in place by Augusta National).
Presented here is one of those Green
Jackets. This is the actual Green Jacket awarded to Doug Ford for winning the
1957 Masters Tournament, and it comes with a letter from Doug Ford himself. As
Mr. Ford explains in the letter that accompanies this great piece, he was given
a stock Green Jacket to wear during the awards ceremony immediately following
his 1957 Masters Tournament victory. He was then measured, and this Green Jacket
was waiting for him when he came to Augusta National for the 1958 Masters
Tournament. Doug Ford brought this Green Jacket home with him after the 1958
Masters Tournament, where it resided before deciding to part with it in 2005. As
so succinctly put by Doug Ford in his letter, "[t]his jacket and what it
represents has been one of the highlights of my career."
It goes without saying that this is
one of the most significant pieces of Masters Tournament history ever offered
for sale. Accompanying this lot is a handwritten letter from Masters Champion
Doug Ford (which is also signed/witnessed by his son). It also comes with a
detailed letter of authenticity from Green Jacket Auctions.
**UPDATE - 9/8/10** We have added a photograph of the
letter of authenticity, which has been signed by 1957 Masters Tournament
Champion Doug Ford himself. This Masters Champion Green Jacket was purchased by
Green Jacket Auctions President Ryan Carey directly from Doug Ford (through a
mutual acquaintance) in 2005 and has remained in his possession ever since. The
letter also refers to photos of Doug Ford wearing this Green Jacket, which were
taken at the time of purchase. These photos are also included with this Green
Jacket, but are of rather poor quality, so they have not been pictured here**
Click on a thumbnail image above to display a larger image below.