The History of Rolling Meadows Golf Course…
Rolling Meadows Golf Course started out as Rolling Meadows Country Club, which sits on land that is rich in history. American Indians, most notably, the Potawatomi, were Northfield Township’s earliest inhabitants. Unearthed artifacts are clear indications of their prehistoric culture. At least two burial grounds of arrowheads over 4,000 years old have been located in the Township.
Descendants of these Native Americans coexisted peacefully with the early settlers, trading and occasionally hunting together, until the incoming tide of settlers forced them to leave the state and move west.
In the early 1800’s, frustrated by crop failures and bad weather, Benjamin Sutton left his Sussex County farm in New Jersey and moved to Michigan, where land was reported to be lush and inexpensive. In 1824 Benjamin Sutton became Northfield Township’s first pioneer, purchasing 80 acres of land on what is now Sutton Road and Pontiac Trail. He thrived in his new home and became not only a successful farmer, but also a livestock dealer and politician, one of Michigan’s first state legislators.
Sutton wasn’t alone in his desire to begin a life in this promising territory. In the early 1800’s the land in Northfield was divided primarily into two groups. The first group, known as “Yankees” came mostly from New York and New England. They were of English descent, and settled primarily in the eastern part of the township. The second group was compromised of Catholics from Ireland who settled in the western part. The land on which Rolling Meadows Golf Course sits today passed through the hands of several of these Irish families. James Cahel bought it from the United States government in 1833 and sold it to the Laughlin family in 1834. In 1838 the McLaughlins bought it from the Laughlins. The O’Briens then bought the land in 1860 and sold it to the Burke family that same year.
Today, stretching along the road named after the first of these pioneers, Benjamin Sutton, lays evidence of the same innovative, persistent and adventuring spirit that stood behind Sutton’s success.
Rolling Meadows was conceptualized in 1968 by three brothers who had some time, a little money, and wanted to travel a new road. Tony Fielek and his brothers decided to build a golf course. And so, 150 years later the Fielek family bought the 160 acres from the Burke family. Rolling meadows became a reality and opened in 1978.
In 2015, the Ianni Family, neighbors of the golf course, purchased the course from the Fielek family. They plan on continuing the laid back, country feel that the course has had over the past 30 years.