based on "Talamore at Oak Terrace" by Dr. James Hilty. Edited for the web site. The complete paper with references is available in our archives
Talamore at Oak Terrace | Early History | Pine Run farm | McKean Manor House | Horace Trumbauer | McKean Divorce Scandal | Pine Run Country Club | Banker's Country Club | Oak Terrace Country Club ~ Wingels | The Old Oak | Slamming Sam Snead | Archdiocese of Phila | Bud Hansen | Realen | Making of a Golf Course | Rebuild 1993-1995
Sale to Realen
Bud Hansen found a ready buyer in Realen Homes. In business since 1968, Realen Homes built quality homes in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware (and since 1996 in the Chicago area), taking pride in their craftsmanship and in building environmentally conscious neighborhoods. Realen subsequently was acquired by Orleans Homebuilders, Inc.
Between December 1992 and October 1993, “Bud” Hansen sold Oak Terrace and adjoining properties to Realen Homes, Incorporated and their subsidiary, RHI-Oak Terrace. On December 15, 1992 Hansen sold Realen four of the six parcels, totaling 118 acres (all of them to become subdivided into residential properties) for $10,900,000. In June 1993 Hansen transferred another 53.04 acres to Realen for $115,100 and in October 19, 1993 Hansen sold the golf course proper, 188.7 acres for a nominal $500,000 fee. According to public records, between December 1992 and October 1993, Realen (RHI-Oak Terrace) paid $11,515,003 to Hansen Development for the same 359.74 acres Hansen had purchased from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia for $6,724,000.
1998 Best Overall Development - Montgomery County
Using Bud Hansen’s concept as its springboard, Realen hired the Macallister Group Architects of Plymouth Meeting to finalize a residential development plan consisting of 275 single-family units and 130 multi-family units, organized around a golf course following Dave Kavanaugh’s general routing scheme. Realen and the Macallister Group announced their intention “to maintain and preserve the mature nature of the property.” Working with arborists and horticulturists, Realen claimed to have rescued from destruction and relocated more than four hundred trees during the home construction process. In recognition of these environmental efforts and in appreciation of the plan’s many elegant features, the Montgomery County Planning Commission presented the Macallister Group and Realen with its 1998 First Place Award for Best Overall Development within Montgomery County.
On October 19, 1993, the Talamore Group, Chestnut Hill, Pennsylvania, acquired from Realen acreage to build a new golf course to serve as the centerpiece for the residential community. In homage to the old Oak Terrace and to link it to the Talamore at Pinehurst course, they announced that the new course, with plans to open in 1995, would be named Talamore at Oak Terrace. Plans were instituted for the gradual demolition of the old Oak Terrace. Through the 1994 season and until its demise, the old Oak Terrace was renamed Talamore at Oak Terrace.
Realen used the former McKean manor house as their sales center from 1993 until November 1999, when they sold the building and surrounding property, including shared parking with the golf club, to the Bradford White Corporation, manufacturers of water heaters whose main plant is in Middleville, Michigan. Bradford White officially moved their corporate headquarters into the manor house on May 1, 2000.
The new development was named "Talamore" – Scottish for “land of great value.” The name echoed Talamore at Pinehurst, the North Carolina golf course whose owners partnered with Realen in bringing Talamore at Oak Terrace to fruition.
Talamore at Pinehurst, North Carolina is a residential community built around a golf course designed by Rees Jones. Rees Jones courses can be found in twenty-seven states, including Pinehurst (Course No. 7) and more than thirty others in North Carolina and Georgia, plus several in Pennsylvania, among them Lookaway Golf Club (Buckingham), Tattersall (West Bradford), and the now-defunct Eagle Lodge (Lafayette Hills). Jones gained particular notice for directing a major restoration of Bethpage State Park (Black Course) for the 2002 and 2009 US Opens and of Baltusrol (Lower Course) in preparation for the 2005 PGA Championship.
Talamore at Pinehurst opened to immediate acclaim in 1992, ranked by Golf Digest among the top five new public courses in America and moved into the forefront of resort golf courses in the Pinehurst and Sand Hills region near Southern Pines. Famous for its llama caddies, Talamore at Pinehurst is also a challenging course, one that requires strategy, rather than length. Rees Jones describes it as a “position course,” where “You have to manufacture golf shots and make them happen.” Rees Jones’s design philosophy and some of his design characteristics can be seen at Talamore at Oak Terrace.
Dr. James Hilty
Dr. James W. Hilty, retired Professor of History and Dean of Temple's Ambler campus, has written extensively about American politics, including Robert Kennedy: Brother Protector (Temple). He has provided political commentaries for various publications, including the Philadelphia Inquirer and served as historical consultant to various news media, including C-SPAN, NBC News, NPR, and others. A Temple faculty member since 1970, Hilty also wrote the introduction to Marvin Wachman's The Education of a University President (Temple).