Spalding de Garmendia was best known as a racquets player, having been the U.S. champion in that sport for six years beginning with the first time it was held in 1890. He was from a wealthy family in Baltimore and spent much of his life in France. He was there in 1900 and decided to try his hand at a similar sport, lawn tennis. De Garmendia teamed up that year with Max Decugis of France, the most successful Olympic tennis player ever. They played well enough to reach the finals but, like every other pairing of that time, they were no match for the great Doherty brothers from England and went down in straight sets. In the singles, de Garmendia lost early, to the younger of the Doherty brothers, Laurie. Spalding de Garmendia was also an accomplished golfer and polo player and was a member of the Organizing Committee for the Yachting Regatta at the 1900 Olympics. In 1895 he entered the first U.S. Amateur golf tournament, but did not get by the first round. Due to his family’s wealth he never had to work, but served during World War I as a special attaché to the American Embassy in Paris.