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Issues Page

National Tennis Hall of Fame
Honoring Outstanding Women in Tennis History

James Van Alen founded the Tennis Hall of Fame, located in Newport, Rhode Island, in 1954.  Van Alen was well-known for devising the Vass Simplified Scoring system, as well as a method to settle ties in tennis. He chose the site of first U.S. National Lawn Tennis Championship (now called the U.S. Open) as the location for the hall. This championship game was held here from 1881 to 1915.  The location was also previously the home of the Newport Casino, a recreational club that offered various outdoor and leisure activities for wealthy individuals.

Van Alen converted the old casino rooms into the museum.  To this day, visitors can tour this building and learn about the history of tennis in fun and interesting ways.  In one section, called Enshrinee Hall, visitors can view commemorative plaques honoring members of the International Tennis Hall of Fame.

A total of 200 individuals have been inducted into the Tennis Hall of Fame, 144 of whom are men and 66 women (35 American women). The Tennis Hall of Fame contains the widest assortment of tennis memorabilia and is the biggest tennis museum in the world.

From its founding, the Tennis Hall of Fame was certified by the United States Tennis Association, and later (in 1986) by the International Tennis Federation.  The hall was renovated in 1992, a project that cost $7.5 million and lasted five years. Each year, the hall sponsors a tournament for professional tennis players.  This is the only event in North America that is played on the old fashioned grass courts.