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Augusta's Master Plan

Augusta Georgia: From Sherman’s March to Arnie’s Army

How did it come to pass that one of the world's best known sporting events, The Masters, came to reside in Augusta, Georgia. As one might expect, there are many answers and behind each of them is a fascinating story.

At its very beginning, the evolution of golf in Augusta goes back to General Sherman's decision to by-pass the city on his March to the Sea. His decision to spare Augusta set in motion the events that paved the way for the era of the Grand Hotels that populated Augusta in the 1900’s, the wealthy northerners who frequented them and the new game that they brought along with them—Golf.

Today--spectators have to enter a lottery just for tickets to The Masters practice rounds. The waiting list for passes to the tournament itself—shut down in 2000--is around 35 years.

Arnold Palmer, Bobby Jones, IV, and 98-year-old Ernie Ball, the only surviving participant from the first Masters, give rare interviews about what makes playing this course so special. Stan Byrdy writer and Sports Director at NBC Augusta 26, long-time course photographer Frank Christian, Bobby Jones historian Catherine Lewis and more, describe the rich history of the land, the city, and stories behind Augusta’s Master Plan.