A History of Fernleigh Lawn Bowling Club

A wonderful yellow booklet available at the club house covers the beginnings of Fernleigh as well as a history of The Game and early lawn bowling in Hartford. This was compiled and edited by Paul S. Rath. He credits fellow members in the Preface for their contributions to the publication. Some of these members are still active in the club.

The booklet was published in 1988 to recognize the 65th anniversary of Fernleigh, below is an excerpt


A very short history :

Fernleigh Lawn Bowling Club has a long and interesting history in the Hartford area. There were seven original members who wished to establish a private independent lawn bowling club. In November of 1922 they drew up a Certificate of Incorporation and developed a set of Bylaws. The official opening of The Fernleigh Bowling Green Club was held at Elizabeth Park on June 20, 1923, at "six oclock, daylight"

It was necessary to find land to build a green and clubhouse. After an extensive search and much neighborhood negotiation, the Lancaster Road location was purchased and developed. The present facility was formally opened on August 20, 1925, with over 50 teams from around the U.S. taking part in the festivities.

Bowling on the Green at the club was exclusively a male activity. In the early years members were called "Fernleighs" and gained a reputation as very fine bowlers, traveling to compete with other organizations with a weekend's driving distance.

In 1941 a Women's Auxiliary was formed whose members contributed many amenities to the club. The Auxiliary members also competed in inter-club games with other women.

In 1995 women were accepted as full bowling members and participate in all club activities and duties with male members.

Today's membership includes couples, singles, and non-bowling Associates. Activities include regularly scheduled tournaments as well as more informal games and social activities. The structure of the club continues to follow the Bylaws. Maintenance of the club house is conducted by club members who cherish its history and enjoy the camaraderie of shared efforts.

While Fernleigh remains a private club, we welcome any who are interested in learning a fun, interesting, and challenging sport.