Bryn Mawr Golf Course Update

I recently met with Joe Bissen who is writing a book on lost Minnesota golf courses. We walked around the Bryn Mawr neighborhood trying to determine the location of the old clubhouses of the Bryn Mawr Golf Course. The course, which existed from 1898 to 1911 near the Penn Avenue-Cedar Lake Road intersection, spawned both the Minikahda and Interlachen clubs before it closed and the course disappeared.

Golfing at Bryn Mawr in 1898. (Minnesota Historical Society)

The Bryn Mawr course had two clubhouses. The first was located at 95 Elm Street, now Morgan Avenue South, which had been a private residence of the Woodburn family before it was purchased in 1898 and converted into a clubhouse. The second clubhouse was built nearby. Bissen has found the address of the second clubhouse in 1908 to be 97 Oliver Avenue North.

Here’s the challenge. At that time Superior Avenue, what is now roughly I-394, was the dividing line between north and south street addresses, but now that dividing line is about a half-mile north at Chestnut Avenue. What was once Oliver Avenue North in Bryn Mawr is now Oliver Avenue South. Can anyone shed light on the present address of what was once 95 Oliver Avenue North? Joe and I suspect it was in the 400 or 600 block of what is now Oliver Avenue South. (Futher complicating addresses in the neighborhood there are no 500 addresses—straight from 490s to 600s!)

Can any Bryn Mawr historians solve this puzzle? Let me know and I’ll put you in touch with Joe. Would property abstracts show old addresses? And why (when) was Bryn Mawr moved from north to south?

Joe Bissen is researching lost golf courses throughout the state, so if you know of other courses, such as the Camden Golf Club in north Minneapolis, which disappeared with hardly a trace, Joe would like to know more about them.

David C. Smith


2 comments so far

  1. Rob Harris on

    Hi David:
    Enjoying your park history blog. I’m a 12-year resident of Bryn Mawr and had not heard about the Bryn Mawr Golf Course till now!
    As for the triangle park at Laurel and Cedar Lake Road, it was created by Greg Lecker, a former NRP Chair and BMNA President. Greg did a lot of this kind of work in the neighborhood in the late 1990s and early 2000’s…not sure, but I would imagine he still maintains the triangle park to this day. I particularly like the limestone boulder that serves as a bench.

    • David C. Smith on

      Thanks for the info, Rob, especially about Greg and his great work in the neighborhood. I wrote in an earlier post on Laurel Triangle that park board staff told me Patty Wycoff maintains the triangle now. (That was probably a year ago though!) I agree about the stone bench. I love that. Thanks for reading.

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