3. The U.S. Open Was Not Always at Flushing Meadows
View of the Unisphere in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park from the Arthur Ashe Tennis Stadium
From 1881 to 1914, the U.S. National Singles Championship was held at the Newport Casino in Rhode Island. The push to move the tournament to New York City began as early as 1911 by a group of New York tennis players. A New York Times article from February 1911 that covered a contentious vote about the club’s move stated that “The arguments were powerfully arrayed against Newport,” but there was no “bona-fide application from any responsible club to hold the tournament elsewhere.” As a result, those in favor of the move lost the vote 60 to 95. By 1915, however, 100 members signed a petition to move the club and won the official vote.
From 1915-1921, the tournament was located at the West Side Tennis Club in Forest Hills, Queens, with a brief few years at the Germantown Cricket Club in Philadelphia while the Forest Hills Tennis Stadium was being built. In 1968, the tournament became the U.S. Open, and in 1978, the tournament moved to Flushing Meadows-Corona Park to accommodate larger crowds, although the West Side Tennis Club attempted to block the move.