By Richard Prunty
When I was growing up in Burton Station, if you left the Station, heading north, following the tracks, you came to a trestle about a mile down the tracks. The trestle crossed the river there. That river was a favorite place to fish and had an amazing swimming hole that we took advantage of each summer. The tracks there were built on a causeway and we had to be careful to watch for trains. If one came, you scurried down the embankment and then had to climb back up that slippery gravel slope to get back to the tracks after the train has passed. Grandview Golf Course was only another mile further north of the tracks from the trestle. As I got older, I would walk the tracks to Grandview and sit around waiting for someone who needed a caddy to carry his bags.
Grandview was started by Mr. Hugh Johnson and his brother. Mr. Johnson and his family were the owners of Johnson Rubber in Middlefield. Mr. Johnson loved to golf and there were no courses close so, as I understand it, he created Grandview. Back then Grandview was a only a nine hole course. It crossed the railroad tracks, went up a hill, back down the same hill, crossed the tracks again and then went around the pond to end at the ninth green. Those wanting 18 holes had to do the course twice. The sixth tee was at the top of the hill and the reason it was called Grandview. You could see the whole valley from the top of that hill.
The golf pro at the course was an older gentleman everyone called Scotty. He had an accent that was definitely Scottish. Grandview at that time did not allow golf carts on the course so we were allowed to sit around the club house just in case anyone needed a caddy. I was lucky because Mr. Johnson hired me one day and liked me so he’d hire me again when he would stop by to play. We got paid a $1.50 to haul the bag for nine holes. When a group came in to golf, we’d carry two bags and do 18 holes. We’d be tired but $6 richer. I made enough money the one summer that I was able to buy a bicycle. Grandview was economically beneficial to us kids growing up in the Station. The course was close enough that we could walk to it. We could get jobs caddying and the older Amish boys got jobs cutting grass, watering and caring for the course. When we did not find work caddying, Scotty often times had small jobs like cleaning clubs or golf balls that we could do earning a few bucks. My favorite past time when there was nothing going on, was to practice putting on the putting green. All of us got quite good at putting.
Thank you to Sheoga Hardwood Flooring & Paneling for supporting articles by local veterans. Sheoga Hardwoods is located at 15320 Burton Windsor Road, Middlefield, 440-834-1710.
This is part three of a four-part story by Richard Prunty who caddied at Grandview Golf Course in the early 60s. Grandview opened in 1929 and was designed by Hugh Johnson. In May 2016, the golf course property was auctioned off and the course closed. Read part one of Richard’s story in the Middlefield Post Plus Aug. 16 issue and part two in the Middlefield Post Aug. 30 issue. Back issues are available at the office in Harrington Square or on the MP website at www.middlefieldpost.com.