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HISTORICAL TIMELINE OF FLUSHING VALLEY GOLF CLUB

  • The Davie farmhouse was used as the Flushing Valley clubhouse (shown above) it was located on Flushing Road in 1930. According to local American Indian history, much of which is unauthenticated due to lack of eye-witness accounts by American Indians themselves, club property probably first belonged to the Sauks who lost it in warfare to the Chippewa. The land was included in the Treaty of 1819 when the U.S. purchased some 6 million acres from the Chippewa.
  • 1835: It was first deeded to Waterman Neff. It changed hands numerous times and,  just prior to its beginnings as a site of recreation, was farmed by the William Davie family.
  • 1928: A group of men from Detroit expressed an interest in the property and began developing the original golf course.
  • 1930: The property was deeded to Flushing Valley Golf Club, Inc. Nine holes were developed. The Davie Farmhouse (pictured) was located on Flushing Road and served as the Flushing Valley clubhouse.
  • 1931: The club was unable to meet mortgage obligations during the depression and the property reverted to Gertrude Davie and Walter and Mildred Heenan. Walter Heenan operated the club as a public course and the clubhouse as a social club during the 1930s and early 1940s.
  • 1935: Due to gas shortages, it became increasingly difficult to obtain machinery, parts and gasoline. Interested golfers contributed their time and equipment to help maintain the course but the shortages finally led to the club’s closure in 1943.
  • 1944: The property was purchased by Dr. N.A.C. Andrews, Dr. William Braamse, Ed Dalton, Fred Russell, Paul Shepard and Gerald Wheeler, all of Flushing. The clubhouse was torn down in late 1944 or early 1945 and the property was dormant for 14 years.
  • 1958: A group of 35 people known as the Flushing Valley Golf and Country Club, Inc. entered into a land contract with the owners.
  • 1961: a modern clubhouse was built.
  • 1969: a pool and bath house opened.
  • 1973: The golf course had the 18 holes that had been talked about for years.
  • 1977: Tennis courts opened.
  • 1995: The clubhouse was demolished and a new clubhouse opened in 1996.

Flushing Valley Golf Club was designed in 1930 by Wilfred Reid & William Connellan

reid-seated-near-his-golf-clubs-c-1926

Wilfrid Ewart “Wilfie” Reid

Was born November. 3, 1884 in (born November. 3, 1884 in BulwellNottinghamEngland) was both a professional golfer and golf course designer.

EARLY CAREER Reid studied club and ball making under Tommy Armour‘s father, Willie, in Edinburgh, Scotland. A scratch golfer at 15, Reid turned professional at 17 and was a protégé of Harry Vardon who helped him get a club professional job at La Boulie Golf Club in Versailles, France, in 1901 for roughly five years. He later was the professional at Banstead Downs Golf Club in Sutton, London, England, for roughly nine years and a successful tournament player. Reid – who was never short on confidence – was a fine competitive golfer despite being small of stature, and he beat his mentor, Vardon, on several occasions.

TOURNAMENT STATS In 1913 Reid visited America with Vardon and Ted Ray where they played in several tournaments including the famous 1913 U.S. Open in which he tied for 16th — Reid tied Vardon for the 2nd round lead and played with Francis Ouimetin the 3rd round. In 1915 he tied 10th. His best finish in the U.S. Open was a T-4 in 1916. He also won the 1926 Michigan PGA Championship and had 26 holes-in-one in his long playing career.

CAREER AS A CLUB PROFESSIONAL In February 1915 Reid emigrated to America at the invitation of Clarence H. Geist to be golf professional at Seaview Golf Club in Galloway, New Jersey, after the outbreak of World War I. His career in America as a club professional included positions at several of America’s top clubs:

PGA Wilfrid served the PGA of America throughout his entire career.  Less is known about his role in the British PGA. He became a member of the PGA of America in 1917 and was appointed to the national PGA Executive Committee as a vice president at large. In August 1920, he was elected VP of the PGA of America and reelected in 1921. In 1920 and 1921 he also held the Office of Secretary of the Southeastern Section PGA. Later in 1929 he was the president of the Michigan Section PGA for three years.

GOLF COURSE DESIGN Not only was Reid a wonderful golf teacher, his greatest accomplishments were golf course designing. Reid began designing golf courses at an early age and laid out courses in Europe and Britain before settling in the United States. He once estimated that he had designed 58 courses and remodeled some 43 others during his design career.

While based in Michigan during the 1920s, he partnered with family friend, turf farm owner and golf course construction contractor, William Connellan, at Indianwood; (Connellan had once worked building golf courses for Donald Ross). Together (in the 1920’s and 30’s) they went on to design and build some 20 courses in Michigan:

Eventually, Reid’s design work numbered over 90 new or remodeled courses across the United States. In addition, he designed courses in:

England (redesigned Banstead Downs GC, Sutton Surrey, Great Britan, 1914)

France (La Boulie Golf Club)

Belgium (La Vallee course) and Canada

END OF LIFE Reid retired to Florida in the early 1950s and consistently improved his game in both social and competitive rounds. Even into old age, he continued to “beat his age” in score on his birthday. He died on November 24th, 1973 at the age of 89 in West Palm Beach. In 1985, Reid was posthumously inducted into the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame.

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