Featherie golf ball

This type of golf ball was introduced in the early 17th century and remained in use for two centuries. The ball was hand crafted and made by sewing three segments of cow or horse hide together, leaving a tiny hole for the filling. We chicken or goose feathers were used to stuff the balls. A top hat full of feathers was the traditional measure used. The ball was filled, sewn finally with an 'eye stitch' and left to dry. The leather shrank, the feathers swelled and the result was a hard ball, which might then have been dipped in white paint as a final hardener. A skilled featherie maker might make only three balls a day and the cost of the featherie ball was excessive. The game of golf became exclusive to the wealthy.
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skin, feathers
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Dumfries & Galloway Council
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