The course at Indian Hills Country Club is an A.W. Tillinghast design dating back to 1926. After ten days on site developing plans, the architect called it “one of the greatest opportunities I have ever had for creating a notable course”.
Two Kansas City-born architects remodeled Indian Hills, Floyd Farley in 1958 and Bob Dunning in 1965, before Tom Clark stepped in to revise two holes in 1984.
An article titled “A Tillinghast Trilogy In The Heartland” by Scott Michaux was published in the Global Golf Post in September 2020: “It comes as a bit of a surprise when you drop dead into the heart of the continental United States and find three A.W. Tillinghast courses in the area around Kansas City, Missouri. Two of them – Kansas City Country Club and Indian Hills Country Club – sit side by side in the plush Country Club District on the Kansas side of State Line Road in toney Mission Hills. The third is Swope Memorial, a municipal course adjacent to the zoo with views of Kansas City’s downtown skyline. Each of the courses is beautiful in its own way, and each with unmistakable Tillinghast features in its green complexes and natural sweep across rolling terrain."
“I love history and I’m fully aware of what we have here,” said Mike Ricket, the head professional at Indian Hills since 1982. “When I bring it up with buddies at PGA shows, they say ‘Oh my goodness, you have [a] Tillinghast course?’ I think people appreciate the significance of it.”
"Indian Hills has a story from The Kansas City Star (dated Feb. 14, 1926) hanging in its Tilly’s 19 bar detailing Tillinghast’s new course plans, including his names for all the holes including Rabbit, Jane, Venice, Jonah, Topsy and The Reef. “Problems Aplenty, as Well as Scenic Beauty, Is Planned by A.W. Tillinghast, Widely Known Architect” the headline states.”
Tillie the Terror considered Indian Hills to be “one of the greatest opportunities I have ever had for creating a notable course”. We therefore wonder whether the unheralded Indian Hills may or may not benefit from a sympathetic new millennium restoration?