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George_Bahto

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Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« on: May 20, 2011, 11:59:59 PM »
A HELP-request to GCA members familiar to the Buffalo area:

I recently found an article from the Buffalo Morning Express dated 1922 which spoke about a course to be built by Raynor in the area. It gave a couple street names but checking Google Earth I donít see any trace of a course and my records donít indicate him being there (except for a 3-hole reference about Macdonald and the CC of Buffalo many years earlier).




Here are pertinent portions of the article. Can anyone familiar with the area shed some light on this course?

1922

Suburban Links to Hold Their Lure for 1922 Season

Glenn Acres to Proceed on a Big Scale

Work on the construction of the claim acres golf club course will get underway on a large scale within the next few days. The topographical map that has been under preparation by George A Diehl will be turned over to Seth Raynor, construction superintendent, and work will then be extensively rushed so that nine holes can be completed before the end of the summer.

Incidentally, the club name hasnít been definitely decided upon. Three names were suggested at the inaugural meeting,. Money Springs, Glen Brook and Glenn Acres, a temporary decision being made as to the latter, but eventually the officers will strive for is still more popular name.

The Glenn Acres links are situated on the Harris Hill Road, a short thoroughfare that swings off Main Street just beyond Williamsville. The property consists of two plots of land, containing 234 acres, fully able to accommodate all requirements of the club for years to come. An old mansion will be reconstructed into a large clubhouse into smaller structures will be given over to be caretaker for home and school house.

In due time, if it should be desired, the club can extend the course to 36 holes, construct polo fields and other little odds and ends that increased popularity of the club.

For the present membership England acres his place at 200 with the bylaws redistricting the list to 250. As you organization expands in its field, an additional 100 members will be taken in at $300. The officers intend to prevent overcrowding of the course, such as exists in many of the clubs, and they are reluctant to accept even the additional 100 if the charter is cleared, it being probable that the original quote of $50 will compose the Harris Hill colony.
If a player insists on playing his maximum power on his tee-shot, it is not the architect's intention to allow him an overly wide target to hit to but rather should be allowed this privilege of maximum power except under conditions of exceptional skill.
   Wethered & Simpson

Ronald Montesano

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2011, 07:07:52 AM »
There is no golf course along Harris Hill Road, as you suppose. My guess is that the Glen lies between Genesee and Pleasantview, where the twisty-turn of the creek lies. As you see, it is relatively undeveloped on both sides of Harris Hill, along the creek. This would be way south of Main Street at the time, but very nice land. As Harris Hill heads north of Main Street, it drops down (the hill) a mild escarpment to the farmlands (then) / housing developments (now) of the north. Main Street would have been more populated then, but that area is less desirable, in my opinion, than the one I cited. I'll keep digging.
Maybe for 2022
~Eden Valley
~Hillview
~Pinehurst (NY)
~Kis 'N Greens
~Pine Meadows
~18 Mile Creek
~Greenwood
~Shawnee
~Leroy
~

Joe Bausch

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2011, 07:15:17 AM »
Do we know if the course ever got built?  Could it have been delayed, then came back as Brookfield CC?

Also notice a "country club lane" just north of Brookfield CC.  Perhaps that is a new road... or maybe a clue to the old club if it was built?
@jwbausch (for new photo albums)
The site for the Cobb's Creek project:
https://cobbscreek.org/
Nearly all Delaware Valley golf courses in photo albums: Bausch Collection

Ronald Montesano

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2011, 07:27:19 AM »
Joe may be on to something, although it would a shame that Raynor was ultimately replaced by William Harries.  There is nothing glady or glenny about the area inhabited by Brookfield, although I guess that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Brookfield is a very nice club, easily top ten and possible top five in terms of challenge, in the Buffalo private area. I would rank it behind CCB, Crag Burn, Park, and a few others. It has no "wow" factor, unfortunately. Some nice holes, but none that grabs you by the sack, twists and says "Hey, did you see that?"

But, back to the thread...of course anything is possible...hopefully some visits to the Clarence and Amherst historical societies will shed some light...stay tuned!
Maybe for 2022
~Eden Valley
~Hillview
~Pinehurst (NY)
~Kis 'N Greens
~Pine Meadows
~18 Mile Creek
~Greenwood
~Shawnee
~Leroy
~

Tom MacWood

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2011, 11:12:29 AM »
Glen Acres was the temporary name for the course, the other two names being considering: Mossy Springs and Glen Brook. Looking at old golf guides it doesn't appear the course was ever built. The closest match was a course called Willowdale in Williamsville, but it was founded in 1920 or two years before this particular course.

George_Bahto

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2011, 11:38:55 AM »
who knows (yet) but the first line of the articles states:

"Work on the construction of the claim acres golf club course will get underway on a large scale within the next few days"

I could see if it were during the WWI time period but this was 1922

Perhaps more info will surface
If a player insists on playing his maximum power on his tee-shot, it is not the architect's intention to allow him an overly wide target to hit to but rather should be allowed this privilege of maximum power except under conditions of exceptional skill.
   Wethered & Simpson

Jim_Kennedy

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2011, 12:46:21 PM »
George A. Diehl was the County Engineer for that area.
"I never beat a well man in my life" - Harry Vardon

Tom MacWood

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2011, 01:54:53 PM »
There was a second brief article in the same Buffalo paper that said construction would begin early the following month (May). That was the last mention I have found of the project.

George_Bahto

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2011, 03:12:38 PM »
jim - - - "George A. Diehl was the County Engineer for that area."

hah - he drove the steam engine
If a player insists on playing his maximum power on his tee-shot, it is not the architect's intention to allow him an overly wide target to hit to but rather should be allowed this privilege of maximum power except under conditions of exceptional skill.
   Wethered & Simpson

Ronald Montesano

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2011, 06:21:43 PM »
That Willowdale reference makes me think twice about Brookfield...it was called Meadowbrook before it was Brookfield, they tell me. The street on the western border is also called Meadowbrook.

Still waiting to hear from the towns.
Maybe for 2022
~Eden Valley
~Hillview
~Pinehurst (NY)
~Kis 'N Greens
~Pine Meadows
~18 Mile Creek
~Greenwood
~Shawnee
~Leroy
~

Kevin Lynch

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #10 on: May 21, 2011, 06:47:51 PM »
That Willowdale reference makes me think twice about Brookfield...it was called Meadowbrook before it was Brookfield, they tell me. The street on the western border is also called Meadowbrook.

Still waiting to hear from the towns.

Brookfield was the first thing that sprang to mind given the timing & general location mentioned in the article.  I'd be interested to see what you hear from the towns.

Dan Herrmann

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #11 on: May 21, 2011, 07:22:52 PM »
If you were going to build a Raynor in metro Buffalo, this would be the garden spot.  Remember - back then, Buffalo was probably top-10 in US population.  It's not terribly far from Country Club of Buffalo and Park Country Club.

Ronald Montesano

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #12 on: May 25, 2011, 10:02:41 PM »
Here is what the Erie County Historical Society came up with:

http://www.google.com/search?q=%22Glen+Acres%22+Buffalo&btnG=Search+Books&tbm=bks&tbo=1

Still digging!!
Maybe for 2022
~Eden Valley
~Hillview
~Pinehurst (NY)
~Kis 'N Greens
~Pine Meadows
~18 Mile Creek
~Greenwood
~Shawnee
~Leroy
~

Jim_Kennedy

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #13 on: March 04, 2013, 05:01:06 PM »
George,
I've scoured the whole area around the location that was written in the article and there are no Raynor courses to be found.

The old Meadowbrook GC, now Brookfield CC, was built in 1927. Not a Raynor, but they did hire Lighthorse Harry Cooper as their Pro in 1928. He beat out Long Jim Barnes who had also applied for the job.

 

The only other course in the vicinity is Transit Valley, but credit for it's design is given to Will Rathman, with George Langlands superintending the construction. In April of 1922 they had 9 holes open w/nine more under construction. Walter Hagen played the course on Apr. 16th and it was reported that he "made a number of suggestions that will serve to increase the difficulties and his advice was readily accepted by the Transit Valley officers and architect".
« Last Edit: March 04, 2013, 05:04:17 PM by Jim_Kennedy »
"I never beat a well man in my life" - Harry Vardon

Kevin Lynch

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #14 on: March 04, 2013, 06:36:02 PM »
George,
I've scoured the whole area around the location that was written in the article and there are no Raynor courses to be found.

The old Meadowbrook GC, now Brookfield CC, was built in 1927. Not a Raynor, but they did hire Lighthorse Harry Cooper as their Pro in 1928. He beat out Long Jim Barnes who had also applied for the job.


Thanks for the image.  What more can you tell me about the 9 holes on the east side of Shimmerville Road?  The current Brookfield Country Club is the left half of the picture (design credit to William E. Harries - the most prolific designer in Western New York).  However, the 9 holes on the upper right 1/2 of the photo (northeast) no longer exist.  Can you tell me what years the Northeast 9 disappeared from aerial photos (was not there as of 1958 per HistoricAerials)?

When I look up Harries' design credits, Brookfield is listed, but there is no reference to 27 holes or any portion having been eliminated.  

From your newspaper references, the NLE 9 holes appeared to have been the ones constructed in 1922.  This makes sense, as the original article refers to the ability to build 36 holes on two separate plots of land.  Also, Ron's searches reference people who belonged to "Glen Acres Country Club"

The current course may have been part of the expansion of the "Glen Acres" Country Club.  Alternatively, perhaps the larger project fell through, and Meadowbrook (later named Brookfield) was formed as a separate entity in 1927.  

I'm not sure if Harries was involved prior to 1927, so perhaps the 1922 work was someone else's.  However, I know that Harries was involved in the construction of Cherry Hill Country Club (Travis design just over the border), which was built in 1923-24, so he was in the area at the time.  

***********************

FYI, Here is an excerpt from the current Brookfield Country Club  Website:

History

Founded in 1927 as the Meadowbrook Club, Brookfield has a rich heritage.  The name change occurred in 1943 when 28 members financed the purchase of the Meadowbrook Club and its equipment.  For the past 60 years, Brookfield has enjoyed an active, steady membership and continuous expansion of the club's facilities and amenities.
 
Located in Clarence, New York, Brookfield Country Club was established in 1927 and has served as host to such prestigious events as the 1948 Western Open won by Mr. Ben Hogan, and the 1985 USGA Junior Boys Championship won by Mr. Charles Rymer.
 
Designed by Canadian Architect, William Harries, the golf course spreads over approximately 170 acres and can be described as a traditional layout, with subtle elevation change, mature tree lined fairways and small to medium sized greens.

 
I find the lack of any reference to the old 9 holes to be interesting - which leads me to believe they were separate entities with separate designers.
***********

Any insight on the 1922 vs 1927 courses would be greatly appreciated.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2013, 06:40:17 PM by Kevin Lynch »

Jim_Kennedy

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Re: Seth Raynor in Buffalo in 1922 ??? Help if you can
« Reply #15 on: March 04, 2013, 08:13:46 PM »
Kevin,
I don't know about those holes, never saw anything, anywhere. Here's a larger image, but it's not the greatest view.

   
"I never beat a well man in my life" - Harry Vardon

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