The oldest golf course in Texas.
Founded in 1899 by Lewis Hancock, former mayor of Austin from 1895-1897, the Hancock Golf Course stands today as one of the oldest golf courses in the state of Texas. Although the course was re-named after Mr. Hancock in 1946, it was the original site of the Austin Country Club. At one time, the course maintained sand greens and 18 holes.Today, Hancock Golf Course is located in the heart of Austin. This par 35, 9-hole course carries up and down hills over beautiful Waller Creek. The old course is relatively short by modern standards, featuring small, well-manicured greens typical of the era in which it was built.Noted Austin player and teacher, Harvey Penick, started his professional career as a caddy at this location of Austin Country Club and remained with the club for over 70 years. Penick was the golf coach at the University of Texas at Austin from 1931 to 1963, coaching the Longhorns to 21 Southwest Conference championships in 33 years.
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Notable members of the early Country Club days at Hancock included T. W. Gregory who was, along with being an original member of the club, served as Attorney General of the United States under President Woodrow Wilson; Dr. David F. Houston who was former Secretary of Agriculture, Secretary of the Treasury, and later President of the University of Texas; Lyndon B. Johnson who served as U.S. Representative, U. S. Senator, U. S. Vice-President, and U.S. President; John Connally who served as Governor of Texas, as Secretary of the Navy, and as Secretary of the Treasury; and J. J. Pickle as U.S. Representative.
Local talent playing out of Hancock included amateurs Tom Miller Jr., Jimmy Connolly, Buck Luce, and Morris Williams, Jr.
The first documented competitive golf contest was February 21, 1900, with Mr. Walter Bremond winning the handicap tournament and scoring a net 73 score for two rounds over the layout. Mr. Hancock presented the winning medal to Mr. Bremond.
- Austin Daily Statesman, February 22, 1900 with compliments of Stripling Blake Lumber Co., Inc. ibid., p.47.
As the club grew, the membership elected to accommodate an expansion to an 18-hole golf club. Edgar H Perry, the club’s second president, led efforts to acquire the 40-acre Ernst Farm. This land was acquired on February 18, 1913 and is the current location of the Hancock Shopping Center.
- Elane Taylor Brown, “Hancock Recreation Center, an Historic Preservation Documentation AMC 389,” for Dr. Wayne Bell research paper, University of Texas, May 10, 1984.
The City of Austin became the owner of Hancock Golf Course in its entirety. The Country Club remained in operation under city ownership for three years while the Riverside location was being completed for relocation. In January of 1951, the Country Club officially gave the city operation of the golf club grounds and clubhouse.
Women: 34.5 / 113