Class of 1991

John Bredemus



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Until the time John Bredemus became Texas’ first resident golf course architect, the designers of the State’s layouts came, put down holes, and left the problems of new and growing courses to whomever happened to be around. Needless to say, some tracks thrived but many did not. Course design and construction moved at a snail’s pace and, consequently, golf as a business and pastime poked along as well.

By 1933 there was a marked change. Pro tournaments were staged in every metro area. Clubs began to have year-round professionals to tend to the needs of amateurs and course building and maintenance emerged as professions. Strange though it may seem, John Bredemus had a hand in all three. He assumed the role of a pro golfer in 1916 because of his interest in architecture rather than a talent for playing. He competed, though not very well and worked as a club pro and teacher until 1926 when he turned exclusively to course design and the promotion of golf in Texas and Mexico. The Bredemus legacy included the first Texas Open, which he co-founded with newspaperman Jack O’Brien, and the initial professional tour events in Dallas, Houston, Corpus Christi, and Beaumont.

Bredemus co-founded the Texas Professional Golfers Associations in 1922 and was largely responsible for bringing the Southwest’s first “major,” the National PGA Championship at Cedar Crest C.C., to Dallas in 1927. Bredemus may have been the game’s first college degreed professional. He played varsity football and also won the AAU National All-Around title in 1908 and 1912. It is said that he was awarded with Jim Thorpe's trophies when they were taken away by the Olympic committee.

Before migrating to Texas, he was an instructor of higher mathematics at Eastern prep schools and is reported to have been private tutor to the children of railroad magnate Jay Gould.

Birthplace: Flint, Michigan

Born: November 20, 1884

Died: May 08, 1946 (in Big Spring, Texas)

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