It was the morning of February 22, 1888, and though all of America was celebrating George Washington’s birthday, Reid had other plans. He told his friends to meet him on the old cow pasture across from where he lived. On that historic day, three golf holes, about 100 yards long, were laid out over the bumpy terrain and cups were dug up from the ground with the head of a cleek. Golf had finally come to America.
Later in the year, at a dinner in Yonkers, the first permanent golf club in the United States was formed, with Reid at the helm. They called themselves the St Andrew’s club, but with an apostrophe inserted to avoid confusion with the place back home, not that there was ever likely to be any. Reid’s crew led a nomadic existence, moving from the cow pasture to the north east corner of Broadway, to an orchard on the Weston estate about a quarter of a mile from their old course. They pitched a tent under the shade of an apple tree and called it a clubhouse. Forever more, these men would be known as the Apple Tree Gang, with Reid, of humble Fife stock, to this day being remembered as the father of American golf.