About The Home Course
Opened in early summer of 2007, The Home Course in DuPont, Wash. was immediately lauded by Golfweek magazine as the No. 2-ranked “Best Public Course in Washington.” It is a walkable layout with panoramic views of Puget Sound, the Olympic Mountains, and Mount Rainier present throughout the golf course. The course is cooperatively owned and operated by the Pacific Northwest Golf Association and the Washington State Golf Association.
The Home Course will eventually house the offices of the WSGA, PNGA, and USGA activities in the Northwest, as well as other allied golf associations in “Northwest Golf House.” It will be a home for junior golf programs, environmental stewardship and turfgrass research. Each year, The Home Course also serves as the venue for some WSGA and PNGA championships and USGA national championship qualifiers.
The course was designed by golf course architect Mike Asmundson of Scottsdale, Ariz. Asmundson has constructed numerous courses in the desert southwest and in South America. He also owns Discovery Bay Golf Course in Port Townsend, Wash.
The property on which The Home Course is located has a long and rich history. Several Native American tribes, known collectively as the Salish people, inhabited the area for thousands of years. More specifically, it was a center of commerce for the Nisqually Tribe. The first European settlement began in 1833 when the Hudson’s Bay Company established a storehouse called Nisqually House at the mouth of Sequalitchew Creek.
Fort Nisqually, a main trading and supply center for early U.S. settlers and local Native Americans, was also built by the Hudson’s Bay Company in 1833. The original site of the old fort has been preserved today next to the first green of The Home Course. In 1843, the fort was re-located to a site adjacent to what is now Center Drive which runs through the heart of the city of DuPont. A re-creation of the old fort now exists at Point Defiance Park in nearby Tacoma.
Interestingly, the PNGA’s initial historical research has indicated that the Hudson’s Bay Company traders laid out a crude six-hole layout around the old fort in the 1830s that may have been the very first golf course in the Northwest.
In 1906, the E.I. du Pont de Nemours Company (today’s DuPont Company) acquired the property and constructed a plant that manufactured explosives. This plant was key to the development of the West. Its black powder and dynamite were used to clear stumps for the railroad’s western expansion and to clear fields for farming the region.
Production of explosives continued until the late 1970s when the property was acquired by the Weyerhaeuser Company as part of a larger plan for industrial development in the DuPont area.
Weyerhaeuser and DuPont initiated clean-up discussions of the site with the Washington State Department of Ecology in 1991, and soon thereafter agreed to clean up remnants of the former manufacturing. The success of the clean-up is attributed largely to partnerships the companies forged with the Washington State Department of Ecology, the Washington State Department of Archaeology and Historical Preservation, the Nisqually Tribe, the city of DuPont, the DuPont Historical Society and other stakeholders. Constructing a golf course was part of the environmental remediation process.