Robert Foulis
Architect, Greenkeeper and Agronomist. Designed with his brother James, Normandie, Glen Echo, Sunset CC, Glen Echo,Bogey Club, Log Cabin, and the original Bellerive CC. Was a Golf Professional at Onwentsia in Chicago prior to arriving in St. Louis. Was head Greenkeeper at Normandie, Glen Echo, Bellerive at the same time. Consulted on almost every course in the area prior to 1930 including Triple A, Ruth Park, Algonquin, Kirkwood, Westwood, and Forest Park.

Courses designed by Robert Foulis
1896 Onwentsia CC (IL) (with Jim Foulis)
1897 Lake Geneva (WI) CC
1900 Town & Country CC (MN)
1901 Glen Echo CC (with Jim Foulis)
1901 Normandie CC (with Jim Foulis)
1902 Triple A (St. Louis)
1904 Algonquin GC (9) (St. Louis)
1906 Minikahda Club (with Willie Watson)
1909 Log Cabin Club (9) (St. Louis)
1910 Bellerive CC (with Jim and Dave Foulis)
1910 Bogey Club (9) St. Louis)
1911 Midland Valley CC (St. Louis)
1913 Forest Park GC (St. Louis)
1916 Riverview CC (St. Louis)
1917 Sunset Hill CC (MO) (with Jim Foulis)

Robert Foulis, 1927

History of Normandie Golf Course

The Normandie Golf Club property was secured by the original owner, J.B.C. Lucas, as a grant from France before the Louisiana Purchase. The club was originally organized as the Normandie Park Golf Club in the spring of 1901. However, its true beginning may have been as the Normandie Park Sportsman and Golf Club in 1897 on the same grounds. Stables on the grounds allowed members to either ride around the open grounds or hunt. A trolley provided transportation and stopped on the corner of Lucas Lane (Normandy Drive) and St. Charles Rock Road. A creek on the grounds is the source of the River Des Peres.

The clubhouseIn 1903, a clubhouse was constructed and the name shortened to Normandie Golf Club. The course was laid out on 120 acres of land leased from the J.B.C. Lucas estate. Eleven holes were on the west, and seven on the east of Lucas Lane. The east side of Lucas Lane is now Incarnate Word Academy and the City of Greendale. The dues were raised from $30 per year to $60 per year to pay for the clubhouse.

In 1908, the Western Open Golf Tournament was played at Normandie Golf Club. This was the first time a major tournament was played west of the Mississippi River. Native Scotsman Willie Anderson captured the title with a score of 299 for first place money of $200. In all, the Western Open was played three times at Normandie Golf Club. In 1913 interclub matches were begun between Field Club (St. Louis Country Club), Glen Echo, Bellerive and Normandie. From these beginnings sprang the St. Louis District Golf Association and the Missouri State Golf Association.

After several months of negotiations with the Lucas Estate, 118.61 acres of land at $700 per acre were purchased in 1919. The money was raised by requiring each member to buy a share of stock in a new holding corporation, the Normandie Investment Company. The Normandie Investment Company was formed by Lon O. Hocker (a St. Louis lawyer) and Sam Breadon (Cardinal baseball owner). The price per share was $250. As none of the land east of Normandy Drive was for sale, a new course had to be laid out as it is now. Rent of $3000; per year was paid by the club to the Normandie Investment Company.

In 1924, First Mortgage Gold Bonds were sold by the club to finance the continuing construction of the new course. These bonds were called and replaced with a new issue for $110,000 in July 1927. The new bonds were due in 1937. In the midst of the great depression, no funds were available to retire the bonds and the bondholders assumed title to the real estate of the club. From that point on, Normandie leased the grounds from the trustee for the bondholders; at first on a year-to-year basis, and then to a ten-year plus ten year option in 1961. It was by strictest economics and low rentals, $2000 to $7000 per year, that Normandie Golf Club survived the 1930’s and 1940’s. At one time Mr. R. N. Emerson, who had become the majority bondholder, suspended the interest on his bonds for 3 ½ years so the club could stay afloat.

Dizzy Dean at Normandie Golf Club George and Babe Didrickson Zaharias Normandie has a “Who’s Who” guest list of greats that have teed it up on the old course: many baseball Cardinal legends like Dizzy Dean, The Gashouse Gang, Pepper Martin and Rogers (Raja) Hornsby played Normandie and built homes in Bel-Nor. Babe Ruth loved to play at Normandie when in town. Mildrid (Babe) Didrikson sharpened her game before mastering it and helped establish the LPGA; George Zaharais was said to have proposed marriage to her at Normandie in the late 30’s. During the '30's and '40's many of the St. Louis Cardinal ball players played at the club, along with their guests from visiting clubs. Sam Breadon had been a member since 1919. Dizzy Dean and his friends would enjoy playing golf and betting large amounts on their abilities. A friendly Nassau could be arranged, wagering $300 to $400 on the outcome. An article written in the old Collier’s magazine noted that Normandie had become the top gambling golf club in the nation. Slot machines lined the walls in the clubhouse, raking in the nickels, dimes and quarters, and the club’s bartender was the unofficial bookmaker to the sport of kings. Bob Hope’s love of golf found him there.

After World War II, membership increased substantially until 1973, when it totaled 408. These years were some of the best Normandie had since the early years. The clubhouse was upgraded, new tees and greens were rebuilt, trees planted and general improvements were made.

In 1984, Normandie was converted into a public course. The clubhouse was demolished in 1985.

Jim Furyk played in his first professional tournament (Lou Fusz Open) acing #16 and Jeff Maggert won there in 1988.

Normandie is currently managed by Walters Golf Management as a public golf course.