the making of modern michigan

Browse Collections
Browse by subject
Browse by institution
participating libraries project background
Bloomfield Blossoms: p. 110-111
Smith, Kay, 1925-

Bloomfield Township Public Library

Bloomfield Township (Mich.) -- History

Oakland Hills Country Club (Birmingham, Mich.) -- History

Outlook Farm (Bloomfield Township, Mich.) -- History

Item Number

part of 'Bloomfield Blossoms' by Kay Smith

text, image


"OUTLOOK FARM" BECOMES "OAKLAND HILLS" No sooner had it been established that the automobile was no passing fad, than a new and different way of life was introduced into Bloomfield. Wealthy families from Detroit, foreseeing that there would soon be good roads and easy transportation to areas previously just too far removed to be of interest, began to buy up farms and con- vert them into estates. Country houses, they were called. Originally bought for a nostalgia for the simpler bucolic life, the farms were first just that, and the new owners lived in the old house in the summer time. It wasn't until "the mansion" was built that farms became estates. The people who owned them brought new tastes in leisure activities. The advent of the golf club was at hand. Within a span of 15 years many clubs were begun in the area. The first in the Township was Oakland Hills Country Club. In 1916 the first board met, organized, and bought land from the Millers and the Germans between Lahser and Telegraph on the south side of Maple. The Millers' house was used as the clubhouse, the hen house became the pro shop, the pro was Walter Hagen, and the course was designed by Donald Ross. In quick succession a new Colonial-style clubhouse was built in 1920, and the first of four meetings of the U. S. Open was planned for 1924. For the '51 Open, the course was redesigned by Robert Trent Jones. Since that time constant improvements to clubhouse, course, swimming pool and tennis courts have kept pace with a constantly increasing membership. The P.G.A. tournament was played at Oakland Hills in 1972 and is scheduled again for 1979. The farmhouse of "Outlook Farm" still stands proudly on Maple Road and looks over the sand traps and the greens where once the apple orchards stood. It's pictured here as it was in 1895 when Emily and Frank German built it, as it is today, and as it sees the Oakland Hills clubhouse.

Bloomfield Blossoms: p. 110-111 part 1 Bloomfield Blossoms: p. 110-111 part 2

The Making of Modern Michigan was funded by the Institute for Museum and Library Services, an independent federal agency that supports the nation's museums and libraries. Through agreement, this site is hosted by the MSU Libraries and therefore is subject to its privacy statement. Please feel free to send any comments regarding this site to