On the course of history


Urbana Country Club receives National Historic Landmark designation

By Brenda Burns - Managing Editor



Today, the Urbana Country Club continues to fill a key recreational role in Champaign County after nearly 100 years of legacy. This is the view looking east toward the clubhouse from the 18th tee.

Today, the Urbana Country Club continues to fill a key recreational role in Champaign County after nearly 100 years of legacy. This is the view looking east toward the clubhouse from the 18th tee.


Brenda Burns | Urbana Daily Citizen

The drive to the main entrance of the Urbana Country Club is pictured in this current photo.


Brenda Burns | Urbana Daily Citizen

Tim Martin (left) putts on the 18th green as his father Dave Martin looks on during a recent afternoon of play.


Brenda Burns | Urbana Daily Citizen

The Urbana Country Club clubhouse, circa 1930.


Submitted photos

Ladies are pictured playing golf in the earlier era of the Urbana Country Club. Women were invited to membership and to play golf on an equal basis with men from the club’s inception.


Submitted photos

Sam Snead is pictured at an Exhibition Match in 1957, where he played against Bob Ross of Springfield, Pete Dye and a young Jack Nicklaus.


Submitted photos

Pete Dye tees off in the 1957 Exhibition.


Submitted photos

Here is an early view of the budding Urbana Country Club.


Submitted photos

Champaign County has added a sparkling green jewel to its crown of history.

On June 8, 2018, the National Park Service of the United States Department of the Interior added the Urbana Country Club to the National Register of Historic Places.

Through the years, 33 private and public sites in Champaign County have been added to the National Register.

The Urbana Country Club was, and still is, located in a rural, agricultural setting east of Urbana on U.S. Route 36.

Shortly after the grand opening in August 1922, the Urbana Daily Democrat colorfully described the country club’s setting: “Situated just three miles east of the city, on the Milford Pike, the surroundings are ideal in every respect. Natural hazards for the golf course abound in every direction and the view ‘from the hilltops’ is superb. On a clear day the ‘blue hills of St. Paris’ form the horizon. In fact, this sky is just a little bluer at the club and the air a little fresher than at any other point in the county.”

According to historical information provided by the club, the Urbana Country Club’s bucolic setting has not changed in the nearly 100 years since the club was established, and the views described in 1922 are the same today. Both the location and setting greatly contribute to the property’s historic integrity.

The design of the nine-hole course, completed in 1923, is intact. Designed by Paul F. Dye, father of world-renowned golf course architect, Pete Dye, the UCC course remains an example of an early 20th-century golf course. Though periodic improvements have been made, the historic golf course has not been reconfigured.

The Urbana Country Club was nominated for the National Register for association with local entertainment and recreation.

It falls into the historic context of early 20th-century country club and golf course development. Both were increasingly popular endeavors nationwide during the era, and the Urbana Country Club easily conveys this history, according to a statement drafted by the club.

It reflects the community’s interest in golf as a recreational sport and the idea that the presence of a country club reflected a city’s status. A resurgence of interest in golf occurred in the post-World War II era, and the Urbana Country Club responded with a number of improvements to the clubhouse and the golf course in the 1950s.

Public invited on Sept. 15

The Urbana Country Club will join with the Champaign County Historical Society to celebrate an event called “Ohio Open Doors” on Saturday, Sept. 15. More detailed information about “Ohio Open Doors” will be published in an upcoming edition of the Urbana Daily Citizen. The public is invited to tour the historic Urbana Country Club during “Ohio Open Doors” and all visitors are welcome to enjoy lunch or dinner at the UCC on that date. For dining reservations, call 937-303-0915.

National Historic Register/Champaign County sites:

-Maj. John C. Baker House, 202 W. Main St., Mechanicsburg

-Barr House, Locust and Sandusky streets, Mechancisburg

-Henry Burnham House, N. Main St. and state Route 559, Mechanicsburg

-Church Of Our Savior, 56 S. Main St. Mechanicsburg

-Dr. Clark House, 21 N. Main St., Mechanicsburg

-William Culbertson House, 103 Race St., Mechanicsburg

-Demand-Gest House, 37 N. Main St., Mechanicsburg

-Hamer’s General Store, 88 S. Main St., Mechanicsburg

-Norvall Hunter Farm, 129 S. Main St., Mechanicsburg

-Kimball House, 115 N. Main St., Mechanicsburg

-Kiser Mansion, 149 E. Main St., St. Paris

-Lawler’s Tavern, North Main Street, Mechanicsburg

-Magruder Building, 16 S. Main St., Mechanicsburg

-Masonic Temple, North Main Street, Mechanicsburg

-Mechanicsburg Baptist Church, Walnut and Sandusky streets, Mechanicsburg

-Mechanicsburg Commercial Historic District, 1-11 S. Main St., Mechanicsburg

-Monitor House, 375 W. Main St., St. Paris

-Dr. Adam Mosgrove House, 127 Miami St., Urbana

-Mt. Tabor Church Building, Cemetery and Hitching Lot, state Route 245, Salem Township

-Dr. Nincehelser House, 28 N. Main St., Mechanicsburg

-Nutwood Place, 1428 Nutwood Place, Urbana

-Carl Potter Mound, eastern side of state Route 56, southwest of Mechanicsburg in Union Township

-Richards-Sewall House, 222 College St., Urbana

-St. Michael Catholic Church, 40 Walnut St., Mechanicsburg

-St. Paul AME Church, 316 E. Market St., Urbana

-Scioto Street Historic District, Scioto Street from Locust Street to East Lawn Avenue, Urbana

-Second Baptist Church, Sandusky Street, Mechanicsburg

-United Methodist Church, North Main and Race streets, Mechanicsburg

-Urbana College Historic Buildings, College Way, Urbana

-Urbana Country Club, 4761 E. U.S. Route 36, Urbana

-Urbana Monument Square Historic District, Urbana

-Village Hobby Shop, North Main Street, Mechanicsburg

-John Q.A. Ward House, 335 College St., Urbana

(Source: National Park Service via Wikipedia)

Today, the Urbana Country Club continues to fill a key recreational role in Champaign County after nearly 100 years of legacy. This is the view looking east toward the clubhouse from the 18th tee.
https://www.urbanacitizen.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/36/2018/08/web1_ucc-fairway.jpgToday, the Urbana Country Club continues to fill a key recreational role in Champaign County after nearly 100 years of legacy. This is the view looking east toward the clubhouse from the 18th tee. Brenda Burns | Urbana Daily Citizen

The drive to the main entrance of the Urbana Country Club is pictured in this current photo.
https://www.urbanacitizen.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/36/2018/08/web1_ucc-front.jpgThe drive to the main entrance of the Urbana Country Club is pictured in this current photo. Brenda Burns | Urbana Daily Citizen

Tim Martin (left) putts on the 18th green as his father Dave Martin looks on during a recent afternoon of play.
https://www.urbanacitizen.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/36/2018/08/web1_ucc-martins2.jpgTim Martin (left) putts on the 18th green as his father Dave Martin looks on during a recent afternoon of play. Brenda Burns | Urbana Daily Citizen

The Urbana Country Club clubhouse, circa 1930.
https://www.urbanacitizen.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/36/2018/08/web1_UCC1.jpgThe Urbana Country Club clubhouse, circa 1930. Submitted photos

Ladies are pictured playing golf in the earlier era of the Urbana Country Club. Women were invited to membership and to play golf on an equal basis with men from the club’s inception.
https://www.urbanacitizen.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/36/2018/08/web1_UCC2.jpgLadies are pictured playing golf in the earlier era of the Urbana Country Club. Women were invited to membership and to play golf on an equal basis with men from the club’s inception. Submitted photos

Sam Snead is pictured at an Exhibition Match in 1957, where he played against Bob Ross of Springfield, Pete Dye and a young Jack Nicklaus.
https://www.urbanacitizen.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/36/2018/08/web1_UCC3.jpgSam Snead is pictured at an Exhibition Match in 1957, where he played against Bob Ross of Springfield, Pete Dye and a young Jack Nicklaus. Submitted photos

Pete Dye tees off in the 1957 Exhibition.
https://www.urbanacitizen.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/36/2018/08/web1_UCC4.jpgPete Dye tees off in the 1957 Exhibition. Submitted photos

Here is an early view of the budding Urbana Country Club.
https://www.urbanacitizen.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/36/2018/08/web1_UCC5.jpgHere is an early view of the budding Urbana Country Club. Submitted photos
Urbana Country Club receives National Historic Landmark designation

By Brenda Burns

Managing Editor

Historical background for this story provided by the Urbana Country Club. Brenda Burns can be reached at bburns@aimmediamidwest.com.

Historical background for this story provided by the Urbana Country Club. Brenda Burns can be reached at bburns@aimmediamidwest.com.