Situated in the rolling terrain of Cleveland's golf rich eastern suburbs, Canterbury Golf Club has carved out an unmatched history and tradition. And from the beginning, the goal of the Club was to produce a golf course capable of challenging the best players in the game during its most prized Championships.
Englishman Herbert Strong was chosen by the Club's founders to design Canterbury. Strong was an excellent player in his own right but his ability to design a golf course would be his enduring legacy. Strong finished his 18-hole design in 1922 and the course was open for play on July 1st of that year.
Not long after Strong had finished with his design at Canterbury did a man by the name of Jack H. Way make his mark on Canterbury. Way was Mr. Everything for the Club from the early 1920's to the early 1940's. He had a passion for golf course design and recognized the importance of the conditioning of the golf course. His commitment to presenting one of the finest conditioned golf courses has carried over for many generations. Golfing legend Sam Snead was quoted as saying he'd "much rather face a rattlesnake than a downhill two-footer at Canterbury." Way also realized that for Canterbury to attract Major Championships, he needed to make some changes to the course. So starting in 1928 Way spearheaded changes to the second nine which would put Canterbury at the forefront of conversations about golf's best Major Championship venues.
Way was succeeded by 1938 Masters Champion and World Golf Hall of Fame member Henry Picard as Golf Professional. Picard was a man of high character and his favorite pastime was standing on the 1st tee in his white shirt and tie watching members tee off and offering tips on how to improve their golf swings. One of those famous Picard tips proved most useful for one of golf's all-time greats, Ben Hogan. Picard urged a struggling Hogan to weaken his grip. And, as they say, the rest is history. Years later, Hogan dedicated his book Power Golf to his friend, Henry Picard. Way and Picard set the tone for the importance of the Club's Golf Professionals, a precedent that all future Professionals hope to uphold.
From the 1932 Western Open to the 2009 Senior PGA Championship Canterbury has hosted 13 Major Championships.
Canterbury is one of only two Clubs in history to have hosted all five of the men's Major Championships that rotate sites. (The US Open, PGA Championship, US Amateur, Sr. US Open and Sr. PGA Championship). And the list of champions is equally impressive.
- Walter Hagen - 1932 Western Open
- Ralph Guldahl - 1937 Western Open
- Lawson Little - 1940 U.S. Open
- Lloyd Mangrum - 1946 U.S. Open
- William Campbell - 1964 U.S. Amateur
- Jack Nicklaus - 1973 P.G.A. Championship
- Mark O'Meara - 1979 U.S. Amateur
- Miller Barber - 1983 Senior T.P.C.
- Arnold Palmer - 1984 & 1985 Senior T.P.C.
- Chi Chi Rodriguez - 1986 Senior T.P.C.
- Dave Stockton - 1996 Senior U.S. Open
- Michael Allen - 2009 Senior P.G.A. Championship
The Club's founding members would be proud to know that their vision for what Canterbury was going to be, came to fruition. And current Club members work hard to protect and uphold Canterbury's legacy.