1848: Introduction Gutta percha ball
In 1848, in the search for cheaper balls, Robert Adam Patterson invented the “gutty”: a ball made of gutta percha, the sap of the rubber tree of the same name, mainly from Malaysia. Initially, it seemed to be a big failure, as the balls fell apart after just a few strokes. But eventually, his brother developed a usable gutty ball.
This gutty was still smooth in the beginning. However, it was soon discovered that the dents caused by the hitting had a positive effect on the ball flight. They then began to deliberately apply these dents to new balls with a knife, hammer or chisel.