Myrtle Beach, South Carolina is rich in history, dating back to the the 1700`s which was then known as “Long Bay”. The area was first inhibited by the Waccamaw Indians before the first English settlers arrived in the late 18th century. The settlers used the area for tobacco, indigo and rice plantations. In 1881 the Burroughs and Collins Company of Conway purchased much of the land and the area then became known as “New Town”.
The Conway and Seashore Railroad Company was also built during this time to help transport lumber from the wooded beach area to Conway, South Carolina which was known as “Old Town”. Shortly after the railroad was built, the railroad started to offer daily service to the coast for there employees and they became the first tourist to the area.
Around the late 1800`s or early 1900`s, the name of New Town was changed to Myrtle after a contest was held by the Burroughs and Collins company, which was won by Franklin Burroughs wife. Talking about having a rigged contest? She came up with the name after the “Southern Wax Myrtle” also known as Myrica Cerifera for you plant lovers.
The vision of Franklin Burroughs lead the way for other visionaries to come to the area. John T Woodside a textile tycoon from Greenville, South Carolina purchased 65,000 acres of land from Myrtle Beach Farms, A division of Burroughs and Collins Company. Woodside`s wanted to build a higher end resort and hotel to rival destinations like Coney Island, Atlantic City and other destinations in Florida.
What does this have to do with the First Ten Golf Courses In Myrtle Beach?
It all leads to the first ground being broken in 1926 on the 27-Hole Ocean Forest Country Club and Golf Course. Woodside hired Sir Robert White to design the 27-hole layout which is now known as Pine Lakes Country Club.
Other golf courses followed suit:
- The Dunes Golf & Beach Club – Opened in 1948 – Robert Trent Jones
- The Surf Golf & Beach Club – Opened in 1960 – George Cobb
- Litchfield Country Club – Opened in 1966 – Willard Byrd
- Myrtlewood Golf Club – Pine Hills Course – Opened in 1966 – Gene Hamm
- Sea Gull Golf Club – Opened in 1967 – Gene Hamm
- Beachwood Golf Club – Opened in 1968 – Gene Hamm
- Robbers Roost – Opened in 1968 – Russell Breeden
- Quail Creek Golf Course – Opened in 1968 – Gene Hamm
- Possum Trot Golf Course – Opened in 1968 Russell Breeden
The Myrtle Beach area, also known as the Grand Strand, had over 110 courses at one point making it “The Golf Capital of The World.” The Grand Strand now as over 80-golf courses and is still the Worlds #1 Golf Destination.