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Sandwedge Golf Association

History Sandwedge Golf Association

PO Box 8232
Meridian, MS 39303

History Sandwedge Golf Association

In 1968, Reuben R. Little, a former caddy at the Tuscaloosa Country
Club, Tuscaloosa, Alabama determined that Lakeview was a Municipal Golf
Course. He was the first among the Black golfers to begin playing the
course and was instrumental in getting others interested. Several other
local Blacks had also gotten the golf fever by caddying out at Northwood
Country Club and too was interested in the links. So, regularly for three
years about 12 guys began playing golf at Lakeview and eventually enjoyed
the links. Prior to this, most of the guys played on the Harris Campus
or either Magnolia Park using only five or seven irons. These clubs
were improvised to drive, chip and putt with as needed. Tin cans were
inserted in the ground for holes.
Each weekend as the group met at the Lakeview Golf Course, they often
discussed the possibility and the idea of organizing themselves into a
group for the purpose of unity, fellowship, and promoting golf in the
Black Community. Another purpose also was to improve their golf game
and knowledge of the game.
So, on May 9, 1971, after finishing (18) eighteen holes of gOlr t
(14) men met at the home of Lee Arthur Rhodes to organize. The following
are the men who were present:

Marshall Bell
Frank Cole
Walter Clark
Charles Holloway, Jr.
Harrison Lewis
Reuben R. Little
John D. Irby
Birdette Moore
Bobby Rand
Kenneth Stennis
Lee Arthur Rhodes
Nathaniel Ryan
Robert Vaughn
Harvey Spinks

Initially, several names were suggested and finally it was agreed
unanimously to name it the Sandwedge Club after a suggestion by Harrison
''Wolf'' Lewis.
Marshall Bell was selected as President;
Robert Vaughn, Vice President;
Lee Arthur Rhodes, Treasurer;
Reuben R. Little, Secretary,
Harvey Spinks, Business Manager;
Charles Holloway, Jr., Public Relations and Parliamentarian;
and John D. Irby, Tournament Director.
The club had its first tournament in 1972 and was very successful
with participants from New Orleans, La., Memphis, Tenn., Birmingham, Al., Mobile,
Al., Atlanta, GA., and Baton Rouge, La. The club has enjoyed success over
the past 8 years with entrants up to 100 to 200 players. Between 1973 and
1977 the club had so many entrants, two tee times were necessary with a
morning and noon shotgun. In 1978, the gas shortage, plus an economic
recession has caused the number of participants to dwindle to less than
Robert "Shorty" Vaughn, Sandwedge' s sharpest golfer in 1972 was the
first round medalist with a score of 66, but was beaten by Otis Stampley of
Jackson, MS. in the first Annual Tournament.