It's a somewhat special woman's world which Betty Hicks describes in this issue of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED as she brings her own wide personal experience to bear on the subject of professional women golfers. But it would be hard to find anywhere a more competitive one. Her forthright article will surely resolve the doubts of any who think that the girls aren't in there playing to win.
Forthrightness is a feminine attribute which SPORTS ILLUSTRATED has long since come not only to enjoy but to expect in the mail it receives from its women readers.
The volume of this mail is a reliable indication of the extent to which women and sports have got together: more than one third of our letters come from women. Many simply ask how to get things mentioned in these pages—from bathing suits to dachshunds and from Mexican wedding shirts to hotel reservations in colorful Acapulco. But there are others who throw us into a swift brace.
From Medford, Mass.: "I think you're the best sports magazine alive, but I have a large bone to pick with you." (About our roller skating coverage.)
July 22, 1956
From Indianapolis: "This is the third letter I've written you and by golly—this time, I'm really going to mail it!" (More motorcycling, please!)
From Jacksonville, Fla.: "I'm indignant." (We didn't say enough about the Gator Bowl game.)
Still, for plain outspokenness, few can match this communiqué from Long Beach, Calif.: "My husband buys SPORTS ILLUSTRATED each week, and I steal it!"
Women, of course, account for a large number of the holders of guest membership cards at J. P. Marquand's Happy Knoll Country Club. Judging by a letter from Mrs. Lydia Felton, a member's wife, to the chairman of the board of governors, they are also intent on making a few changes around the place (see page 26). It would be hazardous to think they can fail, in the light of Mrs. Felton's firm conclusion, "Happy Knoll may be a Man's World, but never forget for an instant that there are women in it."
It's impossible to speak for Happy Knoll's chairman, who is probably still trying to figure out a suitable answer, but speaking for SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, it's the last thing in any world we'd want to forget.