The Edmonton Golf Association as it exists today was formally established on October 16, 2003 following the amalgamation of the Edmonton Ladies Golf Association (ELGA) and the Edmonton Golf Association (EGA). The history of the EGA can be traced back to the first men’s championship conducted in 1921 and the first ladies championship event in 1935.
The Edmonton Ladies’ Golf Association (ELGA) was formed in 1934 with five clubs: The Edmonton Country Club, The Municipal (Victoria), the Highlands Golf Club, the Mayfair Golf & Country Club and the Prince Rupert Golf Club. The Highlands Golf Club hosted the first ELGA tournament in 1935, called the City Golf Tourney. The tournament had two divisions, a silver and a bronze. The silver division championship was won by Mrs. H.A. Lowe of the Edmonton Country Club, and the bronze division championship by Mrs. John Michaels of the Mayfair.
Edmonton Country Club
The Edmonton Golf Club (the forerunner of the Edmonton Country Club came into being on April 4, 1896. The first clubhouse was rented space in Hudsons Bay Company’s Rowand House. Rowand House and the first golf course (5 Holes) were located on Hudson’s Bay Company land that is now occupied by the Alberta Legislature. The golf club was uprooted in 1907 when the new Alberta government purchased the lands for Alberta’s current legislature building.
In 1910 members of the Golf Club acquired land about 8 miles upstream of the Legislature to construct a new course. The new clubhouse opened in 1913. Although there have been numerous changes over the years the club continues at the same location – now for 110 years.
Left: The original ECC clubhouse (Rowand House 1898); Right: A picture of the ECC’s signature 18th hole looking toward the clubhouse with the suspension bridge over the ravine.
Victoria Golf Course
In April, 1896 the Edmonton Golf Club, common parent to the Edmonton Country Club and Victoria Golf Course was established at Fort Edmonton, on land owned by the Hudson Bay Company. The first course was near Rossdale, with holes going up and down the hill and others crossing the railway right of way or following the rutted tracks leading to John Walter’s ferry crossing, where the 105th Street Bridge now stands.
The land was sold to the government in 1905 to build the new Legislative building. The Hudson Bay then leased an area to them just west of the original course.
In 1957, the Edmonton Municipal Golf Course’s name was changed to Victoria Golf Course. The driving range was officially opened in 1961. Both continue as part of one of the busiest municipal golf courses in the world.
Left: Fort Edmonton circa 1880 – lower area was the site of the initial Victoria golf course; Right: Walkway to Victoria Golf Course