Fun Facts About The Masters

Masters at Augusta National

The Masters are almost here and the Cave is getting excited! So to get you in the Augusta spirit, here’s twenty fun facts about the legendary course and tournament!


  1. The club was conceived by Bobby Jones and Clifford Roberts. Their vision was to establish a national membership for the club. They took a $70,000 option on a 365-acre property called Fruitland Nurseries in Augusta, Ga. Jones and Alistair Mackenzie of Scotland designed the course. Construction began in 1931. The course opened in 1932 with limited play. Formal opening was January 1933.
  2. Bob Jones and Clifford Roberts organized the first event, later named the Masters Tournament, at Augusta National in 1934. The Masters Tournament was called the “Augusta National Invitational” for the first five years (1934-1938). The first tournament was held March, 22 1934. Since 1940 however, the Masters was scheduled for the first full week (Sunday – Sunday) in April each year.
  3. Augusta’s front nine were originally its back nine. Before the Masters in 1935, the decision was made to switch the nines. Only one tournament was played with the original course setup—the 1934 Masters,, won by Horton Smith who also won the 1936 Masters, making him the only person to have won with both course layouts.
  4. Jack Nicklaus has the most Masters Tournament wins, with six. Nicklaus became the oldest player to win a Masters Tournament, at 46 years, 2 months and 23 days – in 1986.
  5. Tiger Woods was the youngest player to win a Masters Tournament, at 21 years, 3 months and 14 days – in 1997.
  6. In 1949, the first Green Jacket was awarded to that year’s Masters champion, Sam Snead. The tradition of members wearing green jackets began in 1937, when jackets were purchased from New York’s Brooks Uniform Co. The idea was that Masters patrons easily could see members who would have accurate information.
  7. “Amen Corner” refers to holes No. 11, 12 and 13. In 1958, a Sports Illustrated writer, Herbert Warren Wind, named the holes “Amen Corner” in his description of play where the critical action took place that year. He borrowed the name from an old jazz recording called “Shouting at Amen Corner.”  Arnold Palmer had played through the 12th hole in the midst of a rules controversy to eagle on the 13th hole and win the first of four Masters. The term “Amen Corner” stuck and has lasted for over five decades.
  8. Rae’s Creek was named after explorer John Rae. The creek runs in front of the No. 12 green, has a tributary at the No. 13 tee, and passes by the back of the No. 11 green. Rae’s house kept residents safe during Indian attacks. It was the furthest fortress up the Savannah River from Fort Augusta.
  9. “The big oak tree” on the golf course side of the Clubhouse is about 145-150 years old. This live oak tree was planted in the 1850’s.
  10. The Crow’s Nest provides housing for amateurs during the Masters Tournament. This is where the five amateurs who make the cut stay during the tournament. The room is sparse and small, 30-by-40 feet divided into four cubicles, but for an amateur golfer it is a dream come true.
  11. The Champions Dinner is for members of the Masters Club, those who have won a Masters Tournament, and is hosted by the defending champion on Tuesday of Masters week.
  12. The 10 Augusta National Golf Club Cabins are located on the grounds of Augusta National and provide lodging for members and their guests. One of the cabins is named the Eisenhower Cabin because the Club built it for President and Mrs. Eisenhower for their visits to Augusta National. Avid golfer Dwight (Ike) Eisenhower is the only U.S. president to have been a club member.
  13. The tournament was not played during the years 1943, 1944 and 1945 because of World War II. To help with the war effort, turkey and cattle were raised on the Augusta National Grounds.
  14. No amateur has ever won the Masters.
  15. No one has ever won the par three tournament and the Masters Tournament in the same year.
  16. The first African-American member, Ron Townsend, was admitted in 1990. No black player played in the tournament until Lee Elder in 1975.
  17. Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and former amateur standout and now Senior PGA Tour player John Harris are the only pro golfers who are members.
  18. Augusta National is a seasonal club. It is closed in May and remains closed until October. This is the time when maintenance is done to the course and grounds to keep them looking as beautiful as people have come to expect when the see Augusta National.
  19. The land where Augusta National now resides was an indigo plantation until 1857. A year later, the new owners opened a nursery that operated until 1910. Bobby Jones and Clifford Roberts contacted the son of one of the nursery owners, Louis Alphonse Berckmans, to be in charge of what types of plant life and where each would be planted at Augusta National.
  20. Each hole is named after a plant or shrub. For example, No. 3 is called “Flowering Crab Apple.” You can see all of the names and gets facts about each hole at Augusta National’s website.


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