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Niagara-on-the-Lake
Saturday, October 1, 2022
Exploring Photos with the NOTL Museum: Fort George golf course, 1902
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Many of you are itching to get out on the golf course now if you haven’t already. Here is a 1902 plan of the former Fort George golf course on the Niagara Commons. To orient yourself, note where the remnants of Fort George are drawn in. And the River Road cutting through the middle is now referred to as Queen's Parade. One of the former racetracks on the Commons is also shown on the plan. Golf began in Niagara-on-the-Lake in the mid-1870s and a few practice holes were laid out on the Fort George Commons by a returning officer of the British Army. The next year on the Mississauga Common, a nine-hole course was laid out. The Niagara Golf Club was organized in 1881 based only on the Mississauga nine-hole course. In the early 1890s, golf became a fashionable sport again and nine-hole course was added on the Fort George Commons. In 1895 the first international golf tournament was held in Niagara, nine holes were played first on the Mississauga course, followed by nine holes played on the Fort George course. The next year the Fort George layout was converted to an 18-hole course. From 1895 through to 1914 an annual golf tournament was held by the Niagara Golf Club on the Fort George course, until the eve of the Great War when the course was converted back into a military camp. The Fort George course never reopened. As an 18-hole course it was 4,755 yards long, a scorecard states that it is a bogey 82 (no mention of par). Some of the names of the holes were: Rifle Pit, Magazine, Half-Moon Battery, Fort George, Hawthorns, Oaks, Officer's Quarters, and Barracks. The longest hole was #13 at 448 yards, the shortest was #12 at 99 yards. The clubhouse was the former Junior Commissariat Officer's Quarters.