Pinehurst Heritage Archive

Ross’ moonlight golf contest

MidnightPuttingPB 4-24

If you’ve never heard the story of Donald Ross’ moonlight golf contest against fellow professional Jack Jolly, we suggest you keep reading. 

Described by the Pinehurst Outlook as the “most novel and unique exhibition of its character that has ever taken place either in this country or abroad, during the long and brilliant history of the ancient Scottish game,” it got underway at 8 p.m. Jan. 9, 1906.

More than 200 spectators gathered for the match, which was suggested because of  the “rare quality of the moonlight here which the white, sandy soil makes doubly brilliant.”

Ross won the contest and it was concluded “moonlight golf is not only feasible, but in many ways, practical.”

“The novelty and interest, the strangeness and fascination, and the beauty of the night, made the occasion one of rare enjoyment which has led to a general expression of the hope that events of a like character may not be of uncommon occurrence in future,” the Outlook wrote.

Take a few minutes to read the entire story. Click the photos to enlarge for a better reading experience.



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John Daly returns to Pinehurst, talks about “the shot” in 1999 U.S. Open

John Daly has never won at Pinehurst – he even once lost to a sandbagger (his word) in a made-for-TV event despite shooting 67 – but he did have one of the most memorable shots in Pinehurst lore.

After missing the 8th green in the final round of the 1999 U.S. Open, Daly three times tried to putt the ball up the hill and onto the green, only to have the ball roll back to him. Frustrated, Daly walked up as the ball was rolling back toward him a third time, famously whacking the ball as it was still moving.

It all led to an 11 on the 8th, a final round 83 and a trunk slam from Daly in the parking lot. Of course, he didn’t leave before a leveling a few shots at the USGA.

Daly apologized just days later, but, as we found out after he concluded a round on Pinehurst No. 4 during the Sheetz for the Kidz fundraiser on Monday, Daly still doesn’t like the hole location from that day.

He’s never lost his love for Pinehurst No. 2, though…or for getting a dig in whenever he can. (Although…)

We found that out, too.

(Editor’s Note: We have more from Daly here, including the reason behind his playing barefoot. Yes, he has a reason for it. A golf reason.)

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Pinehurst named as site of the 2019 U.S. Amateur

USAmTrophyClubhouse (2) (931x1280)

VILLAGE OF PINEHURST, N.C. (May 12, 2015) –The United States Golf Association announced on Tuesday that it has selected Pinehurst Resort and Country Club as the site of the 2019 U.S. Amateur Championship. The dates of the championship are Aug. 12-18, 2019.

The 2019 championship will mark the third time Pinehurst has hosted the U.S. Amateur. Labron Harris Jr. won the 1962 U.S. Amateur while Danny Lee was victorious when the championship returned in 2008.

Both Pinehurst No. 8 and Pinehurst No. 2 will be used for stroke-play qualifying whileNo. 2 will be used for match play to determine the champion.

“We are pleased to welcome the USGA’s oldest championship to Pinehurst once again in 2019,” said Robert Dedman Jr., Pinehurst Resort and Country Club CEO and Owner. “For as long as there has been golf at Pinehurst, we have celebrated the amateur’s contribution to the game. To serve as the site of the U.S. Amateur will be an especially proud moment for Pinehurst, and it reflects the passion for amateur golf we share with the USGA.”

Labron Harris Jr.

Labron Harris Jr. reacts to winning the 1962 U.S. Amateur on Pinehurst No. 2. (Photo courtesy of the Tufts Archives)

Pinehurst No. 2, the venerable Donald Ross design, was restored by the team of Coore and Crenshaw in 2010. The course has served as the site of more single golf championships than any destination in America, and in 2014, became the first course to serve as the host of the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open in consecutive weeks. The 2019 U.S. Amateur will be the 10th USGA championship to be hosted by the club and the ninth since 1989, more than any other site in the United States. Pinehurst will also serve as host to the 2017 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship.

“The USGA is thrilled to continue the strong and cherished tradition of the U.S. Amateur Championship at Pinehurst, a proven partner in supporting USGA championships,” said Diana Murphy, USGA vice president and Championship Committee chairman. “We are confident this renowned course will once again provide a worthy test and an enjoyable experience for all when it hosts the world’s top amateur players for a third time in 2019.”

Danny Lee

Danny Lee triumphed at Pinehurst in the 2008 U.S. Amateur.

Pinehurst has a long and storied history with amateur championships, hosting the North and South Men’s Amateur since 1901 and the North and South Women’s Amateur since 1903. Past winners of the North and South Amateur include many of the USGA’s greatest champions, including Walter Travis, Francis Ouimet, Harvie Ward, Jack Nicklaus, Curtis Strange, Hal Sutton and Corey Pavin.

“The USGA is thrilled to continue the strong and cherished tradition of the U.S. Amateur Championship at Pinehurst, a proven partner in supporting USGA championships.” Diana Murphy, USGA

“Pinehurst celebrates amateur golf every day,” said Pinehurst President Tom Pashley. “It’s an honor and a privilege to do so on the world stage by hosting the 2019 U.S. Amateur. We take great pride in our relationship with the USGA and will have hosted 10 national championships at the conclusion of the U.S. Amateur. It wouldn’t be possible without the support of our dedicated members and volunteers, the Village of Pinehurst and the state of North Carolina.”

Pinehurst No. 2 is the only course to have hosted all five of the USGA’s most important events: U.S. Open (1999, 2005, 2014), U.S. Women’s Open (2014), U.S. Amateur (1962, 2008, 2019), U.S. Women’s Amateur (1989) and U.S. Senior Open (1994).

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The 14th hole of Pinehurst No. 8.

The U.S. Amateur will be the first USGA championship conducted on No. 8, a Tom Fazio design that opened in 1996 to commemorate Pinehurst’s centennial. Also known as the Centennial Course, No. 8 previously hosted the 1997 and 1998 PGA Professional National Championships.

The U.S. Amateur Championship is open to amateur golfers with a Handicap Index® not exceeding 2.4. Throughout its history, the U.S. Amateur has been the most coveted of all amateur titles, with notable champions such as five-time champion Bob Jones, three-time champion Tiger Woods, two-time winner Jack Nicklaus, Gene Littler, Arnold Palmer, Lanny Wadkins, Craig Stadler, Jerry Pate, Mark O’Meara, Hal Sutton and Phil Mickelson.

Upcoming U.S. Amateur Championships will be contested Aug. 17-23, 2015 at Olympia Fields Country Club, in Olympia Fields, Ill.; Aug. 15-21, 2016 at Oakland Hills Country Club, in Bloomfield Hills, Mich.; Aug. 14-20, 2017 at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, Calif.; and Aug. 13-19, 2018 at Pebble Beach Golf Links in Pebble Beach, Calif.

Pinehurst No. 2 18th Hole

Pinehurst No. 2

USGA Championships at Pinehurst

1962 U.S. Amateur – Labron Harris Jr.

1989 U.S. Women’s Amateur – Vicki Goetze-Ackerman

1994 U.S. Senior Open – Simon Hobday

1999 U.S. Open – Payne Stewart

2005 U.S. Open – Michael Campbell

2008 U.S. Amateur – Danny Lee

2014 U.S. Open – Martin Kaymer

2014 U.S. Women’s Open – Michelle Wie

2017 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship, May 27-31, 2017

2019 U.S. Amateur, Aug. 12-18, 2019

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Willie McRae and Jackie Burke, together again

There are just two participants from the 1951 Ryder Cup at Pinehurst still living. One of them is Hall-of-Famer Jackie Burke, who at 92 years old, is still active in golf.

The other is Hall-of-Fame caddie Willie McRae, who is still looping at Pinehurst.

On Tuesday, the two spoke, likely for the first time in more than 60 years.

Burke, a two-time major champion who initially rose to fame with two lopsided victories in the United States’s triumph over Great Britain and Ireland in 1951, has been a longtime mentor for 1995 PGA Champion Steve Elkington. On Tuesday, Elk was in Pinehurst for his television show, Secret Golf, to do a feature on Willie. Moments after finishing up a chat with Willie on Pinehurst’s Maniac Hill, Elk got a phone call. It was Burke.

Elkington, telling Burke he had someone he wanted Burke to speak with, handed the phone to Willie. Elk’s crew quickly turned the camera back on, and while our audio isn’t great – and unfortunately  nobody thought at the time to put Burke on speaker – we still feel like we captured a pretty special moment in golf history. You can hear the joy in Willie’s voice, and based on his side of the conversation, you get a pretty good idea of what Burke had to say to Pinehurst’s legendary caddie.

We caught another nice moment earlier in the day when Willie decided to sing a gospel tune for Elk and the crew:


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Michael Campbell announces his retirement from golf

Michael Campbell, the 2005 U.S. Open Champion at Pinehurst No. 2, has announced his retirement from golf, reports Phil Casey of the Press Association writes.

Campbell memorably held off a charging Tiger Woods on No. 2, making history in his native New Zealand that had a lasting impact on one of the game’s greats today, Lydia Ko. Injuries had sidetracked Campbell’s career since the victory at Pinehurst.

“Obviously (winning the US Open) 10 years ago was something special for me and for the country and for golf itself,” Campbell, 46, told New Zealand Radio. “I fulfilled one of my dreams to win a major and it was fantastic.

“But as everyone knows, it has been well documented, my career since then hasn’t been great. But if I walk away from the game right now I could be very proud of my achievements.”

At Pinehurst, we wish the very best to Campbell, a great champion we are proud to include in the annals of Pinehurst No. 2.


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