All Good Things…

November 15, 2020 update: All Good Things… “Everything dies, baby, that’s a fact, but maybe everything that dies someday comes back.” – Bruce Springsteen “I’m glad all you armchair golf course critics are going to try to do this.   Just wait until you see how these things work in the real world.” – Golf Course […]

Finally getting started is a Cool Golf Thing

October 18, 2020:  That is the title of an article written by Tim Gavrich of Golf Advisor.  Read about it here:

Cobb’s Creek GC to be Inducted to the National Black Golf Hall of Fame in 2021

August 18, 2020:  We are happy to report that in the spring of 2021 Cobb’s Creek Golf Course will be inducted into the National Black Golf Hall of Fame. Our original letter of nomination can be found at this site here.   This submission also has some definitive information regarding the “Underground Railroad” that ran along […]

Cobb’s Creek scorecard from the 60s and 70s

November 9, 2019 update:  Our friend Jake sent along a scorecard that he says was used in the 60s and 70s, and he thinks likely even in the 50s after the course was re-routed.  See the images below.  

From Bud Lewis & The Hustle at Cobbs

October 18, 2019 update:  My friend Ed Abrams has posted an audio interview he did a handful of years ago with long-time area pro Bud Lewis, and the topic is Cobb’s Creek.  See the link below:

October 11, 2019 update:  It was a wonderful evening at Overbook Golf Club last night.  The Cobbs Creek Restoration and Community Foundation held a gathering where the status of the project was updated and the official site (see link below) went live.  Mike Cirba and myself are indebted to so many people for making this […]

Main Line Today article

September 21, 2019 update:  The August issue of the Main Line Today contains an article penned by Jim Finnegan on my golf exploits!  Here is the link:

News you’ve been waiting for: the lease has been signed!

July 18, 2019 update:  Last night in a presentation at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, The Cobbs Creek Restoration and Community Foundation publicly announced that a long-term lease has been signed with the city of Philadelphia for the restoration of the Cobb’s Creek Golf Course. Although it is likely that a more ceremonial celebratory event […]

Cobbs Creek Golf Course: An Architectural and Cultural History

July 1, 2019:  That is the title of the presentation to be given by John Burnes and Chris Lange at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania on July 17, 2019 at 6 PM.  All the details of what should be an informative presentation are here: Cobbs Creek Golf Course: An Architectural and Cultural History

1923 photos of Cobb’s creek, near the golf course

June 17, 2019:  The digital collection of the Library Company of Philadelphia has two nice photos from the winter of 1923 of the creek near the golf course.  See the links below.

Lost golf courses in the Philadelphia region

June 11, 2019:  Recently I was on Inside Golf with Harry Donahue to discuss golf courses in the Philadelphia region that no longer exist.  I was honored to do so with Pete Trenham, long-time pro at St. Davids GC and a golf historian.  The show can be viewed on YouTube at this link: Lost golf […]

Philmont’s South course closed on April 1, 2019

April 6, 2019:  It apparently is not a April Fool’s joke, as the South course at Philmont is not reopening this season.  Of course the excellent North course, designed by Willie Park, Jr, is alive and well.  It is sad to hear the South course is no more as Hugh Wilson played a role in […]

Can you imagine the original 6th hole at Cobb’s Creek?

February 26, 2019 update:  As the course is currently configured, the first five holes are pretty much the same as the day Cobb’s opened in May 0f 1916.  Now you tee off on the 6th hole and play it as a par 3 to the original 12th green.  Instead, the 6th hole climbed up the […]

The project is discussed in the Fried Egg podcast

September 11, 2018:  Last Sunday yours truly and Mike Cirba sat down with Andy Johnson of the Fried Egg to discuss the project.  We hope you enjoy the show!

Joe Juliano writes on the Cobb’s project for

August 29, 2018:  Joe Juliano pens a long piece on the Cobb’s Creek project, writing for

Bill Bishop: gone but not forgotten

July 18, 2018:  Bill Bishop died earlier this year, 2/20/18, he was 91.  He was a regular at Cobb’s Creek in the 40s, 50s and 60s and one of the best African-American golfers ever at Cobb’s ranking up there with Howard Wheeler, Charlie Sifford and Bobby Mayes.  In fact all four of them are in […]

Success! The bill has passed

June 21, 2018:  We thank you for your patience.  Hard to believe, Harry, but the City passed and Mayor Kenney signed a bill to lease Cobb’s Creek golf course to our Foundation for a restoration and so much more.  Stay tuned for further details as they become available.  This is very exciting news.

Karakung early history and the opening of the 17th hole at Cobb’s

April 10, 2018:  At this link from the summer of 1926 discusses 11 holes at Karakung being prepped, and how the original par 3 14th hole at Cobb’s Creek has been decommissioned and replaced by the current 17th hole:

Introducing the Bausch Archives at MyPhillyGolf

April 7, 2018 update:  A tremendous volume of early golf articles has been posted to the new Bausch Archives part of MyPhillyGolf.  Included is coverage of the two Daily News Open tournaments held at Cobb’s Creek in the mid 50s.  Here is the link:

More Hugh Wilson at Philmont

January 22, 2018 update:  A friend of mine, a member at Philmont CC, was recently doing some historical spelunking at the Golf Association of Philadelphia archives and came upon some handwritten notes on Philmont suggesting Hugh Wilson may have been even more involved with the South course than I was previously aware.  This blog’s September […]

1958 Inky picture of the 17th hole

November 30, 2017:  Below is a picture from the Philadelphia Inquirer in 1958 of the 17th hole from the original tee that will be in play this coming season!

Back of 1931 Cobb’s Creek scorecard

September 28, 2013 update:  The back of the 1931 scorecard in the 9/25/13 update is below.  It shows the 11 holes in play on the Karakung course, the “Abster-piece” as Mike Cirba and I have dubbed it, designed by Ab Smith.

Very early clubhouse photo

January 20, 2016 update:  Going through my files I found a very early photo of the clubhouse.  See below:

Cobb’s Creek nominated for the National Black Golf Hall of Fame

February 18, 2015 update2:  Recently Mike Cirba penned a nomination letter to have Cobb’s Creek Golf Course be part of the National Black Golf Hall of Fame.  Many thanks go out to Jake Murray in helping us with the gathering of information for the submission.  You can read the letter below: Cobb’s Creek Golf Course […]

1956 view of Cobb’s Creek 17th hole

August 12, 2014 update:  The ‘Noer slides’ contain images taken between the 1920s and 1980s and covers a variety of things, including golf courses: The Noer/Milorganite Image Collection One photo is from the abandoned tee on the current par 3 17th hole at Cobb’s Creek: 1956 view of Cobb’s Creek 17th hole from abandoned tee

1926 Golfers Magazine on Cobb’s Creek

December 10, 2013 update:  Wow, you should see some pictures I have unearthed from the national publication called Golfers Magazine (May of 1926).  Check out the page of pictures below:  

1931 Cobb’s Creek scorecard

September 25, 2013 update:  Bob M., long time player at Cobb’s Creek, has checked in and sent along some early scorecards.  Check out this beauty from 1931 below.  

History of waterway known as Cobb’s Creek

January 1, 2017 update2:  In 1913 the Philadelphia Inquirer gave a short description of the history of the waterway known as Cobb’s Creek.  See the article below (and blog entry from February 8, 2015):

Cobb’s Creek cleeks!

December 20, 2016 update:  Blog friend Ari sends along two pictures of a hickory cleek with a Cobb’s Creek stamp:  

Anti-aircraft battery being moved to the golf course

December 14, 2016 update:  It was in November of 1952 that a Philadelphia Inquirer article detailed the Army anti-aircraft battery being moved to Cobb’s Creek Park and profoundly changing the original golf course.  See the link below.

Wondering about the original 18th hole

November 28, 2016 update:  Mike and I were kicking around the 18th hole again at Cobb’s.  If you read William Evans’ article from 1919 (see January 31, 2016 update below) he states the best hole at Cobb’s was not allowed due to needing trees removed.  We think it might have been an awesome par 5 […]

More photos of the recovered tee on the 17th

November 27, 2016 update:  It is like my birthday was celebrated again with a visit to Cobb’s Creek this afternoon.  The superintendent Eli has really progressed nicely on clearing trees to bring back the original tee on the par 3 17th hole.  For those of you scoring at home, Ab Smith added this hole in […]

Early photo of the original 11th hole at Cobb’s Creek

November 25, 2016 update:  In one of the September 21 updates below was a link to an early photo of the 11th hole at Cobb’s Creek GC.  I’ve purchased this photo from Temple and a link to a high resolution version is below.  Pretty cool!  Note:  a golf historian friend of mine from Winged Foot […]

Photos of Cobb’s Creek from April 9, 1916 Inquirer

November 18, 2016 update:  It is fun to think about how Cobb’s Creek was at the beginning.  See the photos below to see how it looked in April 1916, a little more than a month before the formal opening.

Early photo of the original 11th hole at Cobb’s Creek

September 21, 2016 update2:  Follow the link below to an incredible very early picture of the current 15th hole at Cobb’s Creek (#11 in the original hole sequencing).  Use the scrollbar to zoom in. Early picture of the original 11th hole at Cobb’s Creek GC (courtesy of Temple University)

Cobb’s Creek AAGHOF induction ceremony

June 3, 2016 update:  Over the Memorial Day weekend Cobb’s Creek Golf Club was inducted in the African American Golfers Hall of Fame.  It was a very enjoyable trip for Mike Cirba and yours truly.  In the program booklet included an article Mike penned and you can read it below:   And below is a picture […]

New photo album of Cobb’s Creek GC

May 7, 2016 update:  I’ve gathered up most of the interesting early photos and aerials of the course and have further updated the recent photo album here.

Kingie fishes for golf balls at Cobb’s

March 31, 2016 update:  Blog reader Jake Murray knew the person fishing for golf balls in the photo below.  Jake relays the following: I knew the man in the picture retrieving a golf ball from the water on the 3rd hole.  He was well known to the golfers and kids like myself who were retrieving […]

Philadelphia Record photos of Cobb’s Creek GC

March 27, 2016 update:  Below is a link some photos from the defunct paper Philadelphia Record that were recently gathered from the Historical Society of Pennsylvania (thanks to Friends of Cobb’s Creek GC supporter Matt Frey for his help). Link hopefully to come soon!

October 1954 pictures of the park guard shelter

February 20, 2016 update:  Blog reader Jake Murray has sent along a couple of photos from October 1954 when he and his younger brother were little fellas, right near the park guard shelter by the 14th hole.  A hurricane (Hazel) had recently passed by Philly and brought down trees.

Best hole at Cobb’s Creek wasn’t put into reality

January 31, 2016 updated:  William H. Evans was a golf writer in Philly very instrumental in pushing for municipal golf courses in the City.  In 1919 he left the Evening Public Ledger and started writing Sunday golf columns for the The Philadelphia Record, basically replacing A.W. Tillinghast.  In his first article (see below), he talks […]

More on Cobb’s being inducted into the AAGHOF

January 26, 2016 update: A wonderful update on Cobb’s Creek GC being inducted in the AAGHOF is available at MyPhillyGolf as authored by Mike Cirba: Cobb’s Creek tapped for African American Golfers Hall of Fame

Cobb’s Creek GC inducted into AAGHOF

January 21, 2016 update:  It is my distinct pleasure to announce that Cobb’s Creek Golf Course will be inducted into the African American Golfers Hall of Fame in a ceremony in late May of this year in Palm Beach County, Florida.  Thanks go out to many people, with Jake Murray being the driving force and […]

Early clubhouse photo

January 20, 2016 update:  Going through my files I found a very early photo of the clubhouse, as shown below.

Readers reminisce about the clubhouse

January 10, 2016 update:  Devoted blog reader Jake Murray has checked in from sunny Florida.  His friend Dick Jamison was a long-time caddy at Cobb’s.  The two recently chatted about the clubhouse and here is what Jake wrote: My friend Dick Jamison was in high school and a long time caddy at Cobb’s in 1955.  […]

1931 Cobb’s Creek scorecard

December 18, 2015 update:  FofCCGC supporter Ari F passed along this 1931 scorecard (see below) from Cobb’s Creek.  No truth to the rumor that the D golfer on the card was a young Paul C.

Sifford inducted into PGA of America Hall of Fame

November 16, 2015 update:  Last Saturday (Nov 14) Cobb’s Creek regular Charles Sifford was inducted into the PGA of America Hall of Fame.  His son Charles, Jr. was there to accept on his behalf.  The entire ceremony is here: 2015 PGA Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

Early Cobb’s Creek golf course plan

September 18, 2015 update:  A very interesting find presented to me by an archivist of the Fairmount Park is what appears to be an earlier plan for Cobb’s Creek that ended up on the cutting room floor.  I’ve not had time to fully digest it, nor has my collaborator Mike Cirba, but I thought I […]

Daily News Open plan for golf course

September 15, 2015 update:  The archivist at Fairmount Park has sent me an undated picture of a plan for Cobb’s Creek, which almost certainly has to be from the early 50s when the course hosted the 1955 and 1956 Daily News Open tournaments.  Note the 16th hole playing as a par 3 and the 18th […]

Joe Dey on Cobb’s Creek

July 21, 2015 update:  Before Joe Dey went to the USGA as their Executive Director (1934-1969) then later was the first commissioner of the PGA tour (1969-1974), he was living in Philadelphia and serving as a sportswriter for a variety of publications.  In August of 1928 just before the US Public Links tourney at Cobb’s […]

Cobb’s Creek Links Is Model Course

April 22, 2015 update:  In 1929 the Evening Bulletin reprinted a New York Daily News article extolling the virtues of Cobb’s Creek and bemoaning anything as good in New York:

Cobb’s Creek has the apostrophe!

February 8, 2015 update2:  Recently I asked blog friend Jake: “Who was Cobb?”  A condensed response is as follows: The Dutch, Swedes and later English originally settled the area.  The Swedes named the creek, called Karakung by the Indians, Mill Creek.  A number of mills were built along the creek, the oldest by the Swedes […]

More memories of Charlie Sifford

February 7, 2015 update:  More good stuff remembering Charlie Sifford: Philly’s Terry Gross NPR “Fresh Air” interview with Mr. Sifford Golfing pioneer Sifford got his start at Cobb’s Creek, by Frank Fitzpatrick

Charlie Sifford passes away at the age of 92

February 4, 2015 update:  Charlie Sifford, perhaps the best golfer to have regularly played at Cobb’s Creek, passed away recently at the age of 92.  Often called the “Jackie Robinson of golf”, he was a true pioneer. Coverage at Sifford’s obituary by Joe Jiuliano of the Inky

The tome

January 17, 2015 update:  See the photo below to see how our tome (“Cobb’s Creek Golf Course:  Uncovering a Treasure”) looks when bound nicely and printed on high quality paper.  Our friends at Conlin’s Digital Print & Copy Center (King of Prussia) did so at a very competitive price.  Contact me if you would like to […]

More articles on the great Charlie Sifford

December 1, 2014 update:  Loyal blog reader Jake Murray has followed Mr. Sifford’s award carefully and sends along three links showing Charlie enjoyed the fete: Sifford takes spot among golf greats Sifford receives Medal of Freedom at White House

Charlie Sifford to receive Presidential Medal of Freedom

November 13, 2014 update:  Charlie Sifford, who refined his game at Cobb’s Creek, will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom.  Well deserved, IMHO.  Read about it here: Sifford to Receive Presidential Medal of Freedom

Blog friend Jake Murray checks in again

September 13, 2014 update:  Jake Murray, good friend of the Friends of Cobb’s Creek GC, checked in to comment on the photo that was the topic of the August 12 update: Enjoyed the picture from the old 17th tee.  I remember that view.  It was probably the most spectacular on the course.  When you compare […]

Hugh Wilson at Philmont South

September 5, 2014 update:  Did you know Hugh Wilson designed the 10th and 11th holes at the South course at Philmont CC?  Yep, he did.  I finally got to see the course yesterday.  Here begins my pictures of the 10th hole: Hugh Wilson holes at Philmont South

1956 photo of the abandoned 17th tee at Cobb’s Creek

August 12, 2014 update:  The ‘Noer slides’ contain images taken between the 1920s and 1980s and covers a variety of things, including golf courses: The Noer/Milorganite Image Collection One photo is from the abandoned tee on the current par 3 17th hole at Cobb’s Creek: 1956 view of Cobb’s Creek 17th hole from abandoned tee

Cobb’s Creek article by Pete Trenham

July 24, 2014 update:  Big ups to friend Pete Trenham for his wonderful piece on Cobb’s Creek Golf Course at the TrenhamGolfHistory site.  It focuses on five prominent tournaments the course has hosted over the years.  Read it here: “Cobb’s Creek Golf Club…. Past, Present, and Future”

Early controversial articles on Cobb’s Creek by Perry Lewis

May 21, 2014 update:  Horace Gamble was an early pro at Cobb’s Creek and a big advocate of the quality, and challenge, of the course.  He wasn’t timid about comparing Cobb’s to other famous courses as demonstrated by this March 16, 1919 article by Perry Lewis in the Philadelphia Inquirer: Apparently this article caused lots […]

Jake Murray on Howard Wheeler at Cobb’s Creek

April 9, 2014 update:  Blog reader and contributor Leo “Jake” Murray saw our March 31st update and wrote to me the following concerning African-American golfers and Cobb’s Creek: Cobb’s Creek Golf Club hosted three UGA Negro National Open Championship – 1936, 1947 and 1956. Howard Wheeler won in 1947 and Charlie Sifford captured the title […]

Cobb’s Creek and Charlie Sifford at the WGHOF

March 31, 2014 update:  On May 2, 2014 the World Golf of Hall of Fame will open a new permanent exhibit entitled “Honoring the Legacy:  A Tribute to African-Americans in Golf”.  The historian for the WGHofF, Dr. Tony Parker, contacted me to obtain some photos of Cobb’s Creek, as “The Crick” will be part of […]

1928 Publinks badge from Cobb’s Creek

March 26, 2014 update:  Gosh, would I like to buy this 1928 Publinx players badge currently for sale at eBay.  Update:  I did buy it!  See the badge with the authenticity letter below.

Cobb’s Creek and the Underground Railroad

March 14, 2014 update:  Leo “Jake” Murray has continued his wonderful research on the relationship between the Underground Railroad and Cobb’s Creek (see earlier February 25th update).  By working with leads from the Delaware County Historical Society, he summarizes his findings to the blog below: The land Cobb’s Creek Golf Course occupies today was owned […]

The treasure trove of golf writing by A.W. Tillinghast

February 26, 2014 update:  Recently I penned an article for MyPhillyGolf on the writings of golden age architect A.W. Tillinghast.  He played a prominent role in making the City aware of the need for a public golf course.  You can read my article here: The treasure trove of golf writing by A. W. Tillinghast

Blog friend Jake Murray contributes

February 25, 2014 update:  One of the great delights of maintaining this blog is the number of wonderful e-mails we receive.  Just today we received the following from Leo “Jake” Murray: I no longer live in the area but I grew up in the Highland Park neighborhood of Upper Darby in the 1950’s and 1960’s. […]

Carl Kauffmann wins 1928 Public Links at Cobb’s Creek

January 6, 2014 update: Thanks to our friend Neil R in NY comes this wonderful picture below of Phil Ogden of Cleveland on the 3rd green in the championship match of the 1928 National Public Links at Cobb’s Creek (he lost to Carl Kauffmann of Pittsburgh). A neat cartoon of Kauffmann’s achievement appeared in the […]

Cobb’s land was a dairy farm

January 4, 2014 update:  If this 1922 Philadelphia Inquirer below is to be believed, the land on which the golf course sits used to be a dairy farm.

Plane lands on the course

December 12, 2013 update:  In 1948 a plane landed on the golf course!  See the photo below.  That is on the 14th fairway looking back to the 13th green.

Philadelphia Catches Up

December 11, 2013 update:  The text of the article that goes with the pictures in yesterday’s update is below, with the catchy headline of “Philadelphia Catches Up”.

1915 GAP annual meeting photo

October 14, 2013 update:  It was the late January 1915 Golf Association of Philadelphia annual meeting when it was announced “that work on the public links at Cobb’s Creek park will begin as soon as weather permits”.   See this note together with a fantastic picture of those at the meeting (including Hugh Wilson, A.W. Tillinghast, […]

Locker rooms under construction

October 7, 2013 update:  See below this very awesome picture [big thanks to my friend in La Habra, CA, for rehabilitating that photo] of the locker rooms under construction at Cobb’s Creek (1915 or 1916, I think), with the neat mounding behind the 2nd green.  The women’s locker room on the right (the current clubhouse) and […]

Early course photos

October 4, 2013 update:  More early pictures of Cobb’s Creek from friend John B. are now available.  Two pics from the first hole are below: One of the 3rd green below: And finally two from the 4th tee:

1931 Cobb’s Creek scorecard

September 25, 2013 update:  Long time player at Cobb’s Bob M. has checked in and sent along some early scorecards.  Check out this beauty from 1931 here.

1964 photos of Cobb’s Creek GC

September 24, 2013 update:  A friend of the Friends of Cobb’s Creek GC recently came upon three nice photos of the course from 1964.  This one the 18th green at Cobb’s Creek GC: This one the 18th green at Karakung: And finally the first fairway at Cobb’s:

Who was Hugh Wilson, part 2

September 23, 2013 update:  Mike Cirba has penned part 2 of “Who Was Hugh Wilson”.  Anyone with an interest in Hugh Wilson and Cobb’s Creek should read this and part 1.  Follow the link below: Who Was Hugh Wilson? – Part II

Howard Wheeler wins National Negro Open at Cobb’s Creek

September 14, 2013 update:  In 1947 Cobb’s Creek hosted the United Golfers Association National Negro Open.  Howard “Butch” Wheeler won his 4th of six National Negro Open titles that year (and he played cross-handed!).  Read about it below from the sports page of the Philadelphia Afro-American newspaper.

5th hole in 1916

August 20, 2013 update:  Below is a picture of the creek on the 5th hole from the Public Ledger in 1916.

1928 Public Links article

July 24, 2013 update:  Quite the headline here from the opening round of the 1928 Public Links at Cobb’s Creek (from the August 8, 1928 edition of the Evening Public Ledger).

Bob Mayes at Cobb’s Creek

June 21, 2013 update:  Nice article on Bob Mayes, a golfer that played at Cobb’s with Charlie Sifford: Mayes’ journey to the ’74 U.S. Open

Who was Hugh Wilson

June 5, 2013 update:  Mike Cirba has written a fascinating article entitled “Who Was Hugh Wilson?”.  You can read it here: Who Was Hugh Wilson?

Golf Digest article on Cobb’s Creek

May 4, 2013 update:  See the June issue of Golf Digest for a nice article on Cobb’s Creek by David Owen.  The article is available online:

2nd green 1930 Dallin aerial

April 27, 2013 update:  Below is an aerial of the 2nd green in 1930 (picture courtesy of the Hagley Museum).

1st green 1930 Dallin aerial

April 23, 2013 update:  Note below how much bolder the green surrounds were on the first hole in 1930 (picture courtesy of the Hagley Museum).

Cobb’s in 1924 NY Age

April 12, 2013 update:  With the movie “42” coming out later this week chronicling the admission of the first African-American player into Major League Baseball in 1947, it’s good to see that at its most basic level, at least some of golf was integrated well before then in Philadelphia, as shown below (from the September 20, 1924 […]

Tie-fighter green

January 2, 2013 update:  Check out the unique shape of the current 10th green below in this 1939 aerial from the Dallin Collection (courtesy of the Hagley Museum).

With a little help from a few friends

December 12, 2012 update:  Do you remember the article back in April 2008 by Joe Logan, former golf writer for the Philadelphia Inquirer, entitled “With a little help from a few friends”?  

Progress on course construction

December 10, 2012 update:  It took a little over a year to build the course.  Construction began on April 12, 1915 and the course opened on May 29, 1916.  Read about it below from the April 12, 1915 edition of the Evening Public Ledger. You’ll notice the name William Flynn in the article.  He went on […]

1915 progress on clubhouses

November 29, 2012 update:  Progress on the clubhouses as reported in the September 30, 1915 edition of the Evening Bulletin is below.

Silent Joe Coble Feted for 1924 Publinx title

November 28, 2012 update:  Probably the first skilled golfer to come out of Cobb’s Creek was Joe Coble. He won the US Publinx title in 1924. He was feted by the Cobb’s Creekers as written about here by Frank McCracken of the Public Ledger on July 30, 1924.