About Lew Worsham
It’s hard to identify Lew Worsham Jr. with just one title.
Teacher? Certainly. Worsham began his long career as a teaching professional in 1938 at Chevy Chase Club in Maryland before moving down the road to work at Burning Tree Club in Bethesda a year later. His career also included long stints at the famed Oakmont Country Club in Pennsylvania and Coral Ridge Country Club in Florida.
Dogged competitor? Most definitely. Consider the 1947 U.S. Open Championship, when Worsham bested fellow Virginia Golf Hall of Famer Sam Snead by one stroke in an 18-hole playoff to take home the championship. Worsham seemed to have an affinity for the spotlight. That U.S. Open was the first ever to be televised locally. Six years later, in the first tournament ever broadcast nationally, Worsham holed out for eagle from 104 yards away on 18 to defeat another Virginia Golf Hall of Famer—Chandler Harper—and win the Tam O’Shanter World Championship of Golf.
In all, Worsham won six times on the PGA Tour, with his first victory coming in 1946 at the Atlanta Invitational. He added a Denver Open title to his U.S. Open title in ’47; scored a Phoenix Open win in ’51; and took home the Tam O’Shanter and Jacksonville Open trophies in ’53. He competed 16 times in the Masters and recorded three top-10 finishes, including a T3 finish in 1951. He finished in the top 10 three times at the U.S. Open, including his victory.
Hall of Famer? On multiple occasions, actually. Prior to tonight’s induction into the Virginia Golf Hall of Fame, Worsham—who was born in Altavista in 1917 and died two weeks after his 73rd birthday in 1990—was inducted into the Middle Atlantic PGA, PGA of America and Virginia Sports halls of fame.
Worsham’s long list of accomplishments make him a natural choice for the Virginia Golf Hall of Fame’s 2018 class.
Defeated fellow Virginia Golf Hall of Famer Sam Snead in an 18-hole playoff to win the 1947 U.S. Open Championship.
Professional victories for Worsham
Top-10 finishes total in the Masters and U.S. Open
Number of Halls of Fame Worsham has been inducted into: Virginia Golf, Virginia Sports, Middle Atlantic PGA and PGA of America
Quarterfinal appearances in the PGA Championship, which was played as a match-play event during much of Worsham’s career
Achievements & Media
Special thanks to the USGA, PGA Tour, VSGA, MAPGA, WVGA and inductee family members for contributing photos and videos to this project.
Date of Birth: Oct. 5, 1917; died Oct. 19, 1990.
Year turning pro: 1935
(*-denotes PGA Tour win; bold indicates major victory)
1942 Middle Atlantic PGA Championship
1945 Maryland Open
1946 Atlanta Invitational – *; Middle Atlantic PGA Championship
1947 U.S. Open – *; Denver Open – *; Middle Atlantic PGA Championship
1951 Phoenix Open – *
1952 Miami Beach International Four-Ball (with Ted Kroll)
1953 Jacksonville Open – *; World Championship of Golf – *
1961 Tri-State PGA Championship