In 1947 Charlie Robbins, owner of Clarksville’s Colonial Mills, commissioned Donald Ross to design a golf course for his employees. Ross designed all 18 holes but only the front nine were constructed at this time. Later in the 50’s Dick Wilson designed and built the back nine. He also relocated the tee on hole one and the green on hole five.
Originally the greens were planted with common bermuda grass. As of 2011 the bent greens were replanted with MiniVerde Ultradwarf bermudagrass. Also many of the greens still have their original clay base. With the renovation of the greens an automated irrigation system was installed to replace the original hand-operated system. This has made a difference in improving the turf in the fairways and keeping the MiniVerde greens in fine shape.
Mr. Robbins’ ownership of the club was transferred upon sale of Colonial Mills to Burlington Industries. In the early 60’s the swimming pool was built and in the late 60’s the tennis courts were added to complete the club which is now called Kinderton Country Club. In 2001 Burlington sold the club to members who purchased stock.
Kinderton Country Club’s front nine remains today a true Donald Ross design with crown greens or greens with fall away slopes at the back. Jack Nicklaus said that “Donald Ross’ stamp as an architect was naturalness.” Conversely, the back nine is Dick Wilson’s design with bunkers and water at the front “waiting to grab approach shots that are not aerial.” Together these two designers created a worthy golfing challenge.
A Donald Ross and Dick Wilson Design
With its quiet, uncomplicated ambiance, Kinderton offers the golfer a hassle free experience with quick access for an exceptional round of golf. Particularly challenging is Number 6, a 393 yard par 4 appropriately called “The Monster” by everyone who plays it. One of the toughest par fours in the state, it requires a 210 yard carry off the tee over a lake where proper positioning for the second shot is essential. The elevated green is protected by bunkers left and right with out of bounds over the green. Also challenging is Number 8, a 211 yard par 3 that plays across a valley from the blue/white tees and severely uphill from the silver/red/gold tees. One of the prettiest holes anywhere, a good shot may be rewarded on the undulating green.