Mildred Didrikson Zaharias, 26 Jun 1911 - 28 Sep 1956
Color carbro print
Equipment\Sports Equipment\Golf Club
Mildred Didrikson Zaharias: Sports and Recreation\Athlete
Mildred Didrikson Zaharias: Sports and Recreation\Athlete\Golf
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
Born Port Arthur, Texas
All-around athlete "Babe" Didrikson Zaharias freely admitted that she always "had the urge to do things better than anyone else." That intense competitive drive, combined with superb natural talent, made her one of the top athletes in American sports history. Named Mildred Didrikson at birth, she was later dubbed "Babe" by those who likened her baseball prowess to that of Babe Ruth. A basketball star in high school, Didrikson went on to excel at track and field, capturing first place in five events at the AAU Championships in 1932. At the Olympics that year, she took home two gold medals, with record-setting performances in the javelin throw and eighty-meter hurdles. Yet it was in golf that Didrikson left her most impressive mark. By the time she helped establish the Ladies Professional Golf Association in 1948, she had won forty-one amateur titles. She later claimed thirty-one more with the LPGA.