Back in the early 1920s, Cameron Buxton was the businessman who asked his friend A W Tillinghast to source a location for a course in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and the trained eye of the esteemed architect chose the then rural setting, beside one of the Trinity River branches to the west of Dallas.
The Lone Star State is known for the generally poor quality of its earth, much of it clay, but the site selected for Brook Hollow Golf Club was not only slightly undulating in a relatively flat area, it was mainly made up of sandy soil, creating a wonderful, free-draining base for the fairways.
Built on what was at that time open, rolling farmland, the lush acres of the Brook Hollow course have unfortunately become surrounded by housing on all sides due to the inexorable outward spread of the city of Dallas.
Brook Hollow may be hemmed in somewhat as modern living continues all around at a relentless pace, but within its designated boundary, this classic parkland layout remains an oasis of peace and calm, a veritable golfing refuge from the hustle and bustle outside.
Shot-makers like Ben Hogan have always appreciated this course where, apart from the par threes, there are only two straight holes on the scorecard, the gentle par five 1st and the tough, par four 12th. Seven holes require a fade off the tee and six call for a draw.
One of the hardest holes at Brook Hollow is the slightly uphill, 449-yard 7th hole. This long, difficult par four veers right (with three huge fairway bunkers on the inside of the dogleg) toward a heavily bunkered green that’s framed by enormous pines trees. Little wonder that Hogan, with his ability to power fade, rated this hole as his favourite number 7 in America.
By all accounts, Brook Hollow was the first course to install complete fairway irrigation when it was built in 1921.