The Sport of Emperors
Golf has an interesting history that begins in Ancient Rome. The earliest recorded golf games were played by emperors, way back when the game was called paganica and the ball was referred to as a feathery (on account of it being stuffed with feathers). Sad to say, no records exist to confirm or disprove whether or not checkered togas were worn at this time.
As the game evolved over millennia, so did the equipment. Golf balls were made of wood, then feather-stuffed leather, then gutta-percha (an early form of rubber). It wasn't until the early twentieth century that design breakthroughs gave us the modern golf ball (and, by extension, the modern golf game).