Country clubs & the triumph of golf against all odds

I’ve been working on a story where a country club figures in very peripherally, and as I tend to do, I’ll go off on internet research tangents because I feel like I can’t adequately write about a place or a thing or a person until I have read enough articles and seen enough pictures. I unfortunately have trouble leaving a lot up to the imagination.

One commonality that seems to unite many of the country clubs I’ve been looking at online is that they were founded by people who really, really wanted a great place to play golf. In one case the golf course that some men were playing on was going to close, so they formed a country club. In another case, some men split off from an established country club to open a country club that would have an even better golf course than the one they were playing on. There is one guy named Donald Ross who is the A-list golf course designer–the guy who is brought in if you are serious about your golf course course.

Most country clubs were built between 1890-1925, around the time that wealthy inner ring suburbs were establishing themselves as very desirable places to live. To read the histories on some of the country club websites–which otherwise provide fairly sparse information and often require a log-in–one gets the impression that the founders triumphed against great odds to bring golf to the people.

I guess even country clubs were founded by people who felt like they were a part of something larger than themselves and engaged in a struggle on behalf of some greater good.


Photo credit: Idyllwild Town Crier