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How I Play Golf, by Bobby Jones No. 1: 'The Putter' (1931)

Number 1 in the How I Play Golf series, by Bobby Jones.


(as George E. Marshall)


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Complete credited cast:
Bobby Jones ...
O.B. Keeler ...
Himself - Narrator (voice)


A narrator introduces this series of golf lessons featuring recent Grand Slam winner, Bobby Jones. The goal is to help players improve and to introduce the game to those who've never played. Bobby's on the course hitting practice shots when Dick Bartelmess invites him to watch two men on the 18th green who compete with each other every day. After Frank Craven misses a short putt to lose a bet with Joe E. Brown, Jones offers Craven a putting lesson. Bobby illustrates his grip, stance, back swing, and stroke. Craven takes a few practice putts and then calls Brown back for double or nothing. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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Short | Sport





Release Date:

April 1931 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Putter  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


According to a newspaper article written by Bobby Jones' Boswell, O.B. Keeler, Frank Craven actually made the final 30 foot putt on the first take and actually won a true bet from Joe E. Brown. See more »

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User Reviews

On The Green With Mr. Jones
4 August 2004 | by (Forest Ranch, CA) – See all my reviews

A Warner Bros. Vitaphone Short Subject

Bobby Jones, the world's greatest amateur golfer, gives valuable advice on how to improve one's putting skills.

This was the first in a series of short films in which Warner Bros. lured this all-American athletic hero in front of the cameras to reveal his playing secrets in an entertaining manner. Celebrities from the Studio's roster would be trotted out to interact with Jones; in this initial endeavor we see silent screen star Richard Barthelmess, comic actor Joe E. Brown, and character actor/playwright Frank Craven (best remembered as the Stage Manager in OUR TOWN, 1940). The poor sound quality is an annoyance in this early talkie, but not an insurmountable one.

Robert Tyre Jones, Jr (1902-1971) began playing golf at the age of six and was entering competitions at the age of fourteen. He triumphed in many of these during his short amateur career and became the only person in history to win golf's Grand Slam (British & American open and amateur tournaments) in one year, 1930. Shortly afterwards he retired at the age of twenty-nine. He never went pro and played only a few championships thereafter, but worked as a lawyer in Atlanta, Georgia. Jones helped organize the first Masters Tournament in 1934 in Augusta, Georgia. In 1958, Bobby Jones was created an honorary burgess and guild brother in Scotland's St. Andrews, the traditional birthplace of golf. Sadly, ill health and paralysis caused this remarkable sportsman to spend his last years confined to a wheelchair.


Often overlooked or neglected today, the one and two-reel short subjects were useful to the Studios as important training grounds for new or burgeoning talents, both in front & behind the camera. The dynamics for creating a successful short subject was completely different from that of a feature length film, something akin to writing a topnotch short story rather than a novel. Economical to produce in terms of both budget & schedule and capable of portraying a wide range of material, short subjects were the perfect complement to the Studios' feature films.

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