We collected broken tees from 5 golf courses to highlight evidence of the game being played. In golf, players almost always "tee up" their ball on the first shot of any hole. Teeing up the ball means putting the ball on top of a small stick called a "tee". Tees are sharp on one end (that goes into the ground) and flat on the other end (where players place their ball). They're generally made of wood or plastic. Teeing up the ball increases the odds of hitting a good shot. Often times, players break their tees during the first shot on a hole as they swing the club through the ball and the tee. Many players don't pick up a broken tee after their shot. Some courses, like Dyker Beach outside Brooklyn, NY, put a small container on every tee box to hold stray tee remains at the beginning of each hole. Stray tee remains aren't useless, either. Players often use a broken tee from a previous player to prop their ball up to a shorter height, and to decrease the amount of resistance between the tee and the ball.
The first wooden peg golf tee was invented and patented by Dr. George Grant of Boston. His patent was issued on December 12, 1899 and was given number 638,920. Dr. Grant was not only a golfing genius but a dentist and a professor at Harvard University in Cambridge Massachusetts as well.