AikenAiken, South Carolina
- Address555 Highland Park Dr SW, Aiken, SC 29801, USA
There are several acclaimed courses in the Augusta, Georgia region that will require some major connections to get onto...Augusta Country Club, the Palmetto Club... and, of course, Augusta National. If you aren’t able to get a tee time at those vaunted establishments, never fear: Aiken Golf Club, just across the South Carolina border, will gladly have you in.
The history at the property is long and murky, with much debate how much of a role Donald Ross may (or may not) have had on the design. It is solid fact, however, that original professional John Inglis had worked with Ross previously, and almost certainly brought the Scot’s influence with him to Aiken. The club was originally known as Highland Park Club, a resort associated with a hotel founded by a member of the Tufts family (best known for their founding of Pinehurst).
After going through some hard times for a number of years, architect Jim McNair Jr. conducted a hybrid restoration / renovation, which added further Ross features to the course.
Another historical tidbit: May Dunn, the first female golf professional in the United States, suggested that Inglis add ladies tees, which makes Aiken the first club in the nation to have such a feature.
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Donald Ross worked with Old Tom Morris at St Andrews in 1893 then spent part of the following season at Carnoustie before returning to serve under the Dornoch club secretary John Sutherland.