How old is the Shawnee Inn?

Last Updated on June 14th, 2023

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Nestled in the northeastern region of the United States, right off Delaware, on the Pennsylvania side of the river. The story begins with a New York businessperson named Charles Campbell Worthington. 

In the late 1890s, he took residence in the Shawnee valley area. CC Worthington was an outdoorsman and an engineer, inventor by trade, to which he applied his resourcefulness by creating the now Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort.

The main inn was built in 1911, which gives the resort age around one hundred and eleven years of age, and a river runs through it.

Man wearing grey cap taking a shot - How old is the Shawnee Inn?

When did it Become a Golf Resort?

The first course, the Shawnee course, was built in 1911 alongside the main inn and was designed by A.W. Tillinghast. 

However, it was not until 1964 that the original golf course was expanded from eighteen to twenty-seven holes when Bill Diddle contributed the designs for the new nine holes.

Then another nine holes have since been added when Tom Doak took a par-3 concept and turned it into the Tillinghast Approach Course, which opened in 2006. 

By definition, a resort is a place that is a popular destination for vacations or recreation or frequented for a particular purpose; golfing at the Shawnee fits the bill.  


Who Was the First Owner?

Originally from the New York area, Charles Campbell Worthington, the former head of Worthington Pump and Machinery, opened the Buckwood Inn. He, along with the help of renowned golf course engineers, also opened the Shawnee golf course in 1911.

The resort was given the honor of hosting some prestigious golf tournaments. Still, it was not until 1943 when Fred Waring purchased the resort and changed the name to the Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort. 

Where he produced his show from the Shawnee playhouse, to which many celebrities would make regular appearances such as Lucille Ball, Ed Sullivan, and more.


Who Designed it?

The original golf course at the Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort was designed in 1911 by AW Tillinghast. 

He was known as one of the most prolific American golf course architects in history, resulting in his involvement in creating over two hundred and sixty-five different courses.

Albert Warren Tillinghast was born in 1876 and passed away in the spring of 1942; the Hall of Fame Architect became known as the creator of championship tests. His most notable designs would be that of Winged Foot (East & West), Baltusrol (Upper & Lower), San Francisco Golf Club, and Somerset Hills, to name a few.


Why is it so Famous?

Apart from its hundred years of existence, the Shawnee inn and Golf resort sports some of the best fishing, hiking, and various other means of entertainment to help create a unique experience. 

The fame built up during the 1940s when celebrity personalities Lucille Ball and Ed Sullivan regularly visited.

Then throughout the later twentieth century and in 2006, the ownership of Shawnee inn added nine holes respectively, which added to the higher prestige of the golfing resort and its fame. 

As a result, the alternative in Delaware is a one-of-a-kind place to stay, play, and explore.


Cool History Facts About it

Here are a few cool facts about the history of the Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort:


  • In the early 1900s, Worthington hired a shepherd from Scotland to have his flock graze and keep the course trim, unsuccessfully. He then designed a gang mower and established The Shawnee Mower Factory, which sold units throughout the United States.
  • Legendary Golfer Arnold Palmer met his wife Winnie at the Shawnee Inn when she was an employee there in 1954.
  • In 1967 Hale Irwin won the NCAA Championship for the University of Colorado Buffaloes.
  • In 1975, the resort expanded to include skiing, and Jean-Claude Killy led the effort.


Final Thoughts on How old is the Shawnee Inn

There is a high level of prestige when thinking about Golfing at the Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort; there is also an abundance of natural beauty surrounding the property. 

The Delaware river runs through it; Hall of fame legends were a part of designing, creating, and playing on the hallowed grounds, which even Lucille Ball would frequent.

The stay packages are reasonable for the amount of entertainment provided, the places to explore, and the history to absorb. Even back in the days of being called the Buckwood inn, the golfing here was top-notch, and that continues to be a tradition to this day.  

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