History Of The US Open Trophy

There have been two official US Open trophies - and neither of them will be presented to the winner at Winged Foot.

US Open Trophy
(Image credit: Getty Images)

There have been two official US Open trophies - and neither of them will be presented to the winner at Torrey Pines

History Of The US Open Trophy

The winner of this year’s US Open will be presented with the US Open Trophy. But then again he won’t be. For it is a long time since this actually happened.

The US Open trophy is on permanent display at the USGA Museum in New Jersey.

What the winner will be presented with is a full-size replica of the trophy. Last year that honour fell to Bryson DeChambeau at Winged Foot.

The winner keeps this replica of the trophy for a year and is responsible for getting his own name engraved on it.

He then hands it back the following year- whereupon he is given another replica, slightly smaller than full size. This new replica is his to keep forever.

Also his to keep forever is the gold medal the winner receives.

This tradition which began with the first US Open in 1895. Back then the idea was that the winner’s club got the trophy to display for the year and the winner got a medal.

The Jack Nicklaus Medal

The Jack Nicklaus Medal.

In 2012 this medal was renamed the Jack Nicklaus Medal - or rather named, as previously, like the trophy, it had no name.

Nor did it have a consistent design, but now it incorporates a depiction of Nicklaus on it.

Nicklaus is one of four men who have won the most US Opens, with four each.

The lowest score by an amateur playing all four rounds of the tournament wins the low amateur medal.

Rory McIlroy has his replica of the US Open trophy on display at his home club, Holywood.

When he won in 2011 he took the US Open trophy with him to his subsequent events, to be shown off. Or at least he tried to.

When the US Open trophy was shipped to China, in readiness for his appearance at the Shanghai Masters, the trophy was impounded by Chinese customs officials.

It took much time and effort by his management company and the USGA to get the trophy back.

The first US Open trophy was awarded at the first US Open in 1895. This remained the trophy until 1946.

Sadly, this was then destroyed in a fire at Tam O'Shanter, which was the club of the 1946 US Open champion Lloyd Mangrum.

The USGA therefore commissioned another trophy, a replica of the one destroyed, to be presented to the winner of the 1947 US Open.

This trophy was presented to every winner from then until 1986 when the trophy was retired to the museum.

Sam Tremlett
Sam Tremlett

A golfer for most of his life, Sam started playing the game to prove he was the best player out of his father and two brothers.
He quickly became a golf equipment expert and has always been the one family and friends come to for buying advice, and spends a lot of his time putting golf gear, apparel and shoes to the test.  
He is a graduate of Swansea University where he studied History and American Studies, and he has been a part of the Golf Monthly team since February 2018. He also previously worked for World Soccer and Rugby World magazines.

A jack of all trades across print and digital formats, Sam now spends most of his time testing and looking after golf gear content for the website. He also oversees all Tour player content as well. 

Unfortunately, Sam is not a member of any club at the moment but regularly gets out on the golf course to keep up the facade of having a handicap of five. 


Sam is currently playing:
Driver: Titleist TS3
Fairway Wood: TaylorMade M5 (15 degrees), Nike Covert Tour 2.0 (19 degrees)
Irons (4-PW): Titleist AP2
Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 54˚, 58˚
Putter: Scotty Cameron Circa 62 #6