The 90th Professional Golfers’ Association Championship takes place today through Sunday at Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills. They explain that although the South Course of Oakland Hills was formally opened on July 13, 1918, the legendary reputation of the course came some 40 years later:
Although many tournaments have been held throughout the years at Oakland Hills, the one which gave the course its greatest reputation as “The Monster” was the 1951 Open. The result was a tournament in which only two subpar rounds were shot during the entire 72 hole affair. Ben Hogan won with a total of 287 by shooting a final round 67 after which he was quoted as saying “I am glad I brought this course, this monster, to its knees.” He also said that it was “the greatest test of golf I have ever played and the toughest course.” The late Clayton Heafner who had a final round of 69, the only other sub-par of the tournament, finished second two strokes back. There was some comment after the last round of the tournament of the effect that the tee markers had been moved so far forward that last day as to take some of the fairway traps out of play. In any event, the natural result of this extremely difficult Open was that from that point on the USGA no longer permitted the host Clubs to control the layout for an Open tournament.
You can read more about the history of the club through Wikipedia’s Oakland Hills Country Club entry and view more photos through the Oakland Hills CC course tours and a search of Oakland Hills Country Club photos at Flickr (slideshow). The PGA has a great photo gallery with pics of the course and from the tournament.