|Designed by||Donald J. Ross|
|Length||7,255 yards (6,634 m)|
Main building, seen from Dorr Street
|Location||4601 Dorr St., Toledo, Ohio|
|Area||203 acres (82.2 ha)|
|Architect||Ross, Donald; Devore Company|
|Architectural style||Bungalow/Craftsman, Tudor Revival|
|NRHP Reference #|||
|Added to NRHP||May 10, 1993|
Inverness Club, a private club, located in Toledo, Ohio has forged a place of distinction in professional golf history. Opening in 1903, the club has been the site of eleven championships, including four U.S. Opens and two PGA Championships. It also hosted the Inverness Invitational Four-Ball from 1935 to 1954. Byron Nelson who served as head golf professional from 1940 to 1944 recognized Inverness Club as his “home course.” S.P. Jermain, the club’s founder and first Board President, was credited with conceiving the idea for the Ryder Cup. The championship course was designed by the renowned architect, Donald Ross. Inverness Club will be the host site for the 2019 U.S. Junior Amateur and the 2021 Solheim Cup.
Inverness was founded in 1903, when many of Toledo's wealthiest citizens purchased a parcel of land and built a nine-hole golf course. The course was eventually expanded to eighteen holes. In 1916, the club hired Donald Ross to construct a championship-caliber golf course, which was finished by the end of 1918. In his unpublished book, Golf Has Never Failed Me, Ross discussed Inverness design, one of only seven of his hundreds of courses to be given a discussion.
In 1945, Lloyd Gullickson became the head professional at Inverness Club, succeeding Byron Nelson, who was the professional from 1940 - 1944. Gullickson remained at Inverness as the head professional until his retirement in 1965.
The course has been refurbished three times: once after the 1920 Open by A.W. Tillinghast and Dick Wilson; then in 1978 by George and Tom Fazio; and finally in 1999 by Arthur Hills. Currently Inverness is ranked #37 on Golfweek Magazine's America's Best Classic Courses, and #41 by Golf Digest.
Introduction of golf professionals to the clubhouse
Before 1920 in the United States, golf professionals were prohibited from entering the clubhouse, as they were once seen as little more than servants to their patron members of the country club. As professional golf tournaments began to appear in the early part of the 20th century, the visiting pros were treated the same as the home pros.
By 1920, attitudes had begun to change. Sylvanus Pierre Jermain, considered "the father of public golf in Toledo", lobbied the USGA and the members of Inverness to agree to allowing all players, including pros, into the clubhouse at the upcoming 1920 U.S. Open. Both parties agreed, and Inverness thus became the first golf club in the U.S. to allow pros in the clubhouse.
As a gift for the boldness and generosity Inverness had shown, Walter Hagen gathered other professional golfers when the U.S. Open returned to Inverness in 1931 so that a gift could be purchased for the club. Together they purchased a grandfather clock for the club house which is still housed there today. On the brass plate of the clock, this inscription was written:
- God measures men by what they are
- Not by what they in wealth possess
- This vibrant message chimes afar
- The voice of Inverness
Winners of major tournaments held at Inverness Club include:
- U.S. Open
- U.S. Amateur Championship
- 1973 – Craig Stadler
- PGA Championship
- U.S. Senior Open
- Future championships
- National Park Service (2009-03-13). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
- "Golf in Columbus at Wyandot Country Club".
- America's 100 Greatest Golf Courses - Golf Digest
- Toledo's Attic
- A Paradigm Shift in Golf History - USGA