As the summer sun finally makes its appearance after a cool and wet spring, the golf courses in Massachusetts will begin filling, as the popularity of that sport continues to rise.
Medfield has a long history connected to the sport of golf. During the late 1800s and into the turn of the century, Medfield had three golf courses. One at “Allen’s Castle Hill Golf Links” off North Street (site of today's Norfolk Hunt Club), one at Sewell Homestead off Main Street, just past the cemetery and one at Jewell’s Farm off Philip Street near Foundry Street.
Castle Hill Golf Links drew large number of golfers from Boston. These out-of-town golfers arrived at the Farm Street Railroad Station and walked down Farm and North Streets to the course, often bringing a picnic lunch with them. After spending the day golfing they would return to the Farm Street Station and take the train back into Boston.
Medfield, at the time, was connected by two passenger train lines. One ran east and west from Boston to Bellingham with stations at Farm Street and Medfield Junction. The other ran from Mansfield to Framingham with stations at Park Street and the Junction. This “Junction” at Adams and West Mill Streets, was the intersection of the two rail lines with station, switching controls and telegraph facilities, as well as passenger and freight handling. In 1902 seasonal fees for the Castle Hill Golf Course were $2.
In 1906 another golf course was established off East Main Street. Named the Medfield Country Club, it elected Helen S. Brown as its first president. In addition to the golf course, the club contained tennis and basketball courts and croquet grounds. It was open to members only and special games, matches and tournaments were held each Saturday. That same year, Harold Williams was elected president of the newly formed Medfield Golf Club.
Allen’s Castle Hill Golf Course was later taken over by the Norfolk Hunt Club, which still owns the North Street site today. The Hunt Club first came to Medfield in 1900 from Dedham to get more open country, avoid the criticism that came about from the barking of the hounds and to answer the complaints of those outside the town proper about the riders jumping into their flower beds.
In 1901, Norfolk Hunt was incorporated into the Norfolk Hunt Club. In addition to later taking over the land of the Castle Hill Golf Course, the club also owned land in Dover along the Medfield town line. The former Sewell and Jewell Golf Links today still contain much of their open space and rolling fields and with a little imagination you can still hear the word “fore” being yelled and see the golfers heading down the fairway towards the next hole.