In September of 1915 an avid group of golfers took over a lease of 100 acres from Mayo doctors E.S. Judd and D.C. Balfour. Harry Turple, a Red Wing Course Golf Professional, was brought in to lay out a nine-hole course and Rochester Golf Club was born. The members desired a more challenging golf course and as luck would have it, a Mayo Clinic physician married the daughter of noted golf course architect Albert Warren Tillinghast.
Tillinghast had become the pre-eminent golf course architect of his time by designing courses such as Winged Foot, Baltusrol and the San Francisco Golf Club. In 1916, Rochester Golf Club became incorporated and changed its name to Rochester Golf & Country Club. Construction began on the new course and it opened the following summer.
One of the original members who has also left his thumbprint on Rochester Golf & Country Club was Walter D. "Pop" Shelden, MD. "Pop" Shelden had played a great course in Texarkana that was cut out of a pine forest and brought that idea back to Rochester with him. In the early 1930s he bought 5,000 pine seedlings for ten dollars and started a nursery at the southwest corner of the course. Over 30,000 trees were eventually transplanted to the course over the next fifteen years. Unfortunately, "Pop" passed on before the overall project was completed. He has since been honored by the playing of the Walter D. Shelden Golf Tournament that is now played as our Member/Guest Tournament. The old clubhouse was leveled in the fall of 2002 and the brand new "Tudor" style clubhouse opened in June 2003. The swimming pool area was remodeled shortly after that.
The Rochester Golf & Country Club provides a stern, but fair test of your golf skills. The new clubhouse and state of the art Professional Shop gives its members something to be very proud of. We welcome you to the Rochester Golf & Country Club.
CLICK HERE to read a great historical Post-Bulletin article from 1994.
2016 is RGCC's Centennial Year. A lifetime (or more) of events have happened over those 100 years. Below are just a few articles highlighting RGCC's 100 Years!!
CLICK HERE to read a Centennial article about RGCC from Rochester Magazine
CLICK HERE to read a Centennial article about RGCC from Life on the Hill Magazine
CLICK HERE to read a Centennial article about RGCC from The Post-Bulletin