Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis is hosting the 100th PGA Championship in 2018, putting the St. Louis club back on the national stage for the first time since the 2008 BMW Championship. Since Bellerive is a fleeting tournament host, lots of golf fans don’t really remember the course (and could well forget it by Sunday at 7:30 p.m.). Whether you find the course architecture fascinating or not is up to you, but those macabre golfers might be interested to know there are multiple cemeteries on the course.
The first cemetery is actually under the first fairway at Bellerive Country Club. That’s right. In the middle of the fairway at the par-4 first is a cemetery. No, the graves aren’t marked anymore, so it’s not like driving through some kind of headstone mine field. It’s unclear who is buried underneath the fairway.
The other cemetery is one which is still preserved by the club. It’s located behind the eighth green. The Hibler-Fitzgerald Cemetery, as it’s called, goes back to 1845 and sits on approximately one-fifth of an acre near an adjoining road. A man named Samuel Hibler established the cemetery, and 14 people are buried there, with the last coming in 1921. Bellerive cares for the cemetery and has blocked it off from the course with a black chain-link fence. They’ve also used stones to mark the graveyard’s boundaries.
This isn’t the original site of Bellerive Country Club. The club moved here in 1955, and the current course, designed by Robert Trent Jones Sr., opened in 1960 before hosting the US Open just five years later. Ever since the move, however, the club has taken care of the adjoining graveyard that’s not in play. Were someone to hit a ball in the graveyard, we could only assume a golfer would get a free drop of some kind because disrespecting the dead seems like a terrible idea.