A Century of Greenkeeping
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A celebration of the history of The Ontario Golf Superintendents Association. A unique story of the unsung heros, and an interesting look at the development of the profession.


Gordon Witteveen was born in The Netherlands in 1934 and upon arrival in Canada some twenty years later, attended the Ontario Agricultural College in Guelph. During summer vacations he developed a love of golf while working at the Noranda mines Golf Course in the province of Quebec. Upon graduation from college (1958), he became the superintendent at London Highland Country Club. After three years he moved to Toronto and for twelve years was the superintendent as the now defunct Northwood Golf Course. It was during this period that he became involved with the Ontario Golf Superintendent's Association and later helped start the Canadian Golf Superintendent's Association.
He initiated The Green Master magazine and served as its editor for five years. Witteveen also served on the Gold Course Superintendent's Association of America as a director and remains active in that association as a member of the Historical Preservative Committee.
In 1973 he became Superintendent of the 36-hole Board of Trade Country Club which expanded to 45 holes by designing and constructing the 9-hole south course just a few years later. Since retiring from the Board of Trade in 1999, Witteveen reopened a dormant 9-hole layout near Brantford. The Pleasant View Golf Club is owned and operated by the Witteveen family.
Gordon Witteveen is world traveler who has visited and played golf courses all over the globe. Often during his travels he made presentations such as "25 Years of Mistakes." Together with his colleague, Michael Bavier from Chicago, Witteveen co-authored a book titled Practical Golf Course Maintenance. A seminar based on the book The Magic of Greenkeeping has been presented all over Canada, the USA, and beyond. Witteveen is a regular columnist for a number of magazines, and he has received the Leo Feser Award for writing excellence in the American Golf Course Management magazine. He is also a teacher and lecturer, but his most lasting contribution to golf is the many young men and women he has mentored who have followed in his footsteps.


Chapter 1. Golf in the Beginning.

Chapter 2. Between the Wars, the Roaring Twenties and the Great Depression.

Chapter 3. Other Greenkeepers from Between the Wars.

Chapter 4. John Gray, Greenkeeper, Essex GC.

Chapter 5. World War II and the Early Growth of Golf.

Chapter 6. Boom Times.

Chapter 7. Our Children and Our Dear Friends.

Greenkeepers of the Twentieth Century.