crossed the water to play in Ireland, and had the pleasure
of winning an open tournament at Dollymount, near Dublin.
Though it was not officially described as an Irish Championship,
it practically amounted to one. Many of the leading British
amateurs and professionals were there. The medal I received,
which my wife wears as a brooch, bears the following inscription:
for amateurs and professionals, medal play, 36 holes-1st prize,
won by Andrew Kirkaldy, 1st round 78 strokes, 2nd round 76
prize was £30 and the second prize was £20, which
was won by my brother Hugh. As we had agreed to halve whatever
we might win, this meant that each got £25. We had a
desperate race in a jaunting Irish car for the boat, nearly
slipping off the side seats all the way. Hugh said to me on
board, " £5 from you, Andra." I was handing
it to him when a gust of wind blew the fiver into the channel.
What I said need not be written. A sailor offered to jump
overboard and try to recover the note if we would get the
captain to stop the boat and reward him with a pound whatever
happened. I did not think the chance was good enough, and
Hugh agreed to let me off by paying him £2 10s. So we
each took home the half of £45.
time I'm speaking about, Lord Dudley was Lord-Lieutenant of
Ireland, and he very often had me to play with him. I suppose
it was quite right to call him " His Excellency,"
though I am not much up in such things. He wired to me from
London, saying he was coming to St. Andrews, and asking me
to give him some games. I was only too pleased, for Lord Dudley
was a grand master.
I got a licensed caddie for him and me. After a day or two
his lordship was joined by some friends, and he said he would
like me to caddie for him, as he was not much taken with the
caddie I got for him. The caddie-master said: " If you
carry the clubs, you will be took up to the coort and fined,
because you have not any licence as a caddie,'
" Gae awa'," says I, " I'm going to carry his
lordship's clubs, and you and your bye-laws can do your worst."
" I'll report ye," said the caddie-master. "
Your trouble be on your own head, Andra! "
Next morning a policeman made his appearance near the teeing
ground. The man in blue said: " Are you going to carry
for Lord Dudley? "
" That I am," says I, " at a' risks. He's my
The policeman said: " Well, you'll be taken up, because
you are not licensed as a caddie, although you're a professional
*' Dinna talk such balderdash tae me," says I. "
There's Lord Dudley over there. Why don't you speak to him
about it? A policeman nccdna be feart tae do his duty. Do
you know who Lord Dudley is? He's the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland.
That's like being the King of Ireland. If you have any complaint,
go over and tell him."
The policeman said, " I'll watch that," or something
of the sort. Anyway he did not go over to Lord Dudley, and
I marched away with his lordship's clubs on my shoulder as
an unlicensed caddie, telling him nothing about what the policeman
A week later I got a summons to appear at the court, charged
with carrying clubs for hire without a licence. Never in my
life did I feel more affronted. Fancy a professional golfer
being disgraced in that way. I tell you it went against the
grain to obey that summons.
But what else could I do? I could not run away and have judgment
against me for not turning up. The court was crowded as if
it had been a murder trial, instead of only being a test case
When the Fiscal read out the charge, the Bailie-that is the
presiding magistrate-looked over at me as I sat there scowling
in the dock, and he says, " Andrew, what have you to
say to this charge? Are you guilty or not guilty?
" Not guilty, of course," says I. *' What wrang
have I done? "
The caddie-master then came into the witness-box and swore
that I carried clubs on such and such a date for hire without
the badge that caddies were now required to wear. He also
told the court that I had been properly warned and that I
committed the offence with my eyes wide open. Just as if I
would carry clubs with my eyes shut.
It looked as if I had not a leg to stand on. But I let the
court know something different before I was done with them.
Mr. Taylor was leaving the building when I hollered to him:
" Here, Mr. Taylor, just a word with you. It's my turn
now. This is a court of justice, and there's never any justice
about a one-sided story. I want the court to let me ask you
" No, no, no," said one of the three or four magistrates
on the Bench.
" Yes, yes, yes," says I. " There's nobody
here to defend me but myself, and I claim the right to do
The Fiscal agreed that I had a perfect right to question the
witness. " But your questions must be proper ones, Andrew,"
" They'll be proper enough and to the point," I
said. "I'm not going to waste the time of the court either."
The caddie-master was put back in the box, and says I to him,
" You are the caddie-master at St. Andrews, are you not,
Mr. Taylor? "
" I suppose so," says he.
" That's no answer," says I. " My question
was a proper one and I want a proper answer." The Fiscal
bore me out " Yes," says Mr. Taylor, " I am
" Right ! " says I. " Now will you tell the
court whether you saw Lord Dudley take out a ticket for me
" I did not," said the caddie-master.
" You say I was caddy ing for hire," says I. "
Did you see Lord Dudley pay me ? "
" I did not," says the caddie-master.
" Then what's this case all about," says I, sitting
down in a fine temper.
" Tut, tut," says the Bailie. " There is no
case at all. Go away, Andrew."
" Not just yet," says I. " Let me say this.
Lord Dudley is like the King in Ireland. Now suppose the very
King of England was to wire me to caddie for him at St. Andrews,
would you be bringing me up here, at my time of life, with
all my experience as a professional golfer, to charge me with
breaking the law because I didna lower my dignity by taking
out a caddie's licence for the job ? "
The court just laughed and the folk at the back clapped their
hands and rummaged with their feet. I'm telling you it was
a great morning in St. Andrews, and everybody I met for days
laughed to me. I had a letter from Lord Dudley, in which he
jokingly said, " Andrew, you beat them by a few holes
On the way home an old friend who had been at the court came
across the street to me, and says he:
" Man, Andrew, you've mista'en your calling. You ocht
to have been a lawyer. That was a grand cross-examination
" Did ye think so? " said I.
" That I did," said he, " and I am sure the
Fiscal was of the same opeenyun."
" I just gaed to the point by the shortest cut,"
" Not a word was wasted," said he. " But, Andra,
at ween you and me, did you caddie for a fee that time? "
" Good day," says I. " I'm muckle obleeged
to you. Did you never try caddyin' for the good of your health?
As Lord Lieutenant of Ireland
residence was the Viceregal Lodge
or better known now as Áras an Uachtaráin, the
home of the President of Ireland. So the next of Kirkaldy's
stories about Vardon outside Áras an Uachtaráin
in 1903 trying to remember the password for entry into the
palatial mansion in Phoenix Park is ever so strange when you
consider that professionals weren't allowed enter the golf
I saw Vardon looking rather glum. It was when we and several
others were playing at Dollymount, Dublin, and were the guests
of Lord Dudley, at the Viceregal Lodge. The sentry always
stopped us at the gates. I came up one day and found Vardon
" What's the matter, Harry? " I asked.
" I've forgotten the countersign, Andrew. I hope you
remember it! "
"That's all right, Harry," I said. "Trust an
I gave it to him and we passed through.
Vardon looked very relieved. I think he was afraid of being
obliged to stop out all night.
The battle of Tel-El-Kebir
took place in 1882 and even at this time a large part of the
British Army were made up of Irish soldiers.
in the Egyptian Campaign-my first and only taste of the soldier's
real business - I was twice shot in the leg and once speared
in the arm. I could roll up my sleeve and show you the mark.
It was an ugly cut, but it might have been worse. An Irishman,
named Teddy O'Neal, saved my life by making short work of
the big Arab that fell as his spear was coming for my chest.
Teddy gave him the " daft yin," as we say in St.
Andrews, meaning the knock-out blow.
Given that the likes of Lord
Dudley, Willie Fernie, Arnaud Massey and Kirkaldy were making
this journey its reasonably safe to say Kirkaldy is referring
to the Lord Lieutenant's Golf Party in 1903 and it wouldn't
be too much of a stretch to say all the aforementioned were
also staying at the Viceregal Lodge.
I still think
Massy saved my life, Lord Dudley's life, Willie Fernie's life,
the lives of several ladies and his own life while crossing
a sheet of water in Ireland when a gale sprang up and nearly
blew our boat over. Massy pulled out his knife and cut the
sail free. The Irishman who had charge of the tiller coolly
said, when we gave him a bit of our minds, " You would
have been all the better for a dip in the holy water."
' You don't take the tiller any more," said Massy. "
I will take charge. You are a mad Irishman." Our reason
for crossing this stretch of water was to take a short cut
to Portmarnock golf course. We did not try that short cut
Andrew Kirkaldy's unwavering
belief that the stance is the cornerstone of a great golfer.
were in argument about the Stance outside a club-house in
Ireland some years ago, and a number of gentlemen listened
to the argument. Of course I was in it and placed the Stance
before everything. In the end one of the professionals bet
me half a sovereign that I could not prove my theory. We went
on the lawn and several of the amateurs formed themselves
into a jury.
I placed my challenger's feet one on a level and one on a
little raised bank, and asked him to show me how he could
swing. It was an extreme example, but it proved my point in
Then I asked him to stand and swing in his own style. He made
a fine drive, for his Stance was exactly what I had been saying
it should be. Then I shifted his feet an inch or two and asked
him to drive. His shot was partly pulled and partly smothered.
The jury gave me the verdict and the half-sovereign.
It is the same for all shots. Pains taken with the Stance
are well spent. A stiff left arm for the iron and a firm grip,
all will be well if the Stance is right. In putting, stand
straight to the hole; don't cut any capers. A good honest,
business-like Stance is all that is necessary.