Lee Dieter donates collection to Turfgrass Information Center

Lee Dieter donates collection to Turfgrass Information Center

Retired superintendent accumulated numerous books, monographs, magazines and newsletters.

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December 16, 2016

The Turfgrass Information Center of the Michigan State University Libraries announced it has received a generous donation of materials from Lee C. Dieter. This donation included well over 200 monographs, including works like the 1930 Lawrence Dickinson title “The Lawn” accompanied by its rare book jacket and other important monographs such as Cunningham’s 1914 Lawns, Golf Courses, Polo Fields, and How to Treat Them and Sutton’s 1886 Permanent and Temporary Pastures. This donation also contained a significant collection of serial materials, including impressive runs of Lawn Care, TurfNet Monthly, Virginia Turfgrass Journal, bound editions of Outing and many copies of turfgrass field day and conference proceedings. This donation also included a noteworthy collection of nearly 300 scorecards from facilities all over the United States – the majority of which the Turfgrass Information Center had no prior holdings from.

Also noteworthy was the vast collection of invaluable serial materials produced by the Mid-Atlantic Association of Golf Course Superintendents (MAAGCS), including: Turf News, Turf News Letter, Mid-Atlantic Association of Golf Course Superintendents Newsletter, Turf Talk and Turfgrass Matters. The MAAGCS materials alone totaled over 400 individual items, adding a third to the amount of material available through the MAAGCS full-text archive: http://archive.lib.msu.edu/tic/matnl/browse.html, including significant amounts of unheld issues from the 1950s-70s.

Dieter, CGCS retired, was superintendent at Washington Golf and Country Club for 36 years. He was an active member of the Mid-Atlantic Association of Golf Course Superintendents, with a position on the board for over 15 years, serving as the president twice, as well as editing the newsletter for six years. Lee also served on the United States Golf Association Green Section Committee, and was a member throughout the 1970s. He was among the first to stand the testing process to become a Certified Golf Course Superintendent, and was part of the movement to tie continued education requirements into certification eligibility. Dieter has long been a collector of golf memorabilia, including a large book collection totaling over 3,000 titles – the base of which came from Richard Watson and John Connelly, both early superintendents in the Mid-Atlantic area.

“Lee Dieter’s longstanding interest in the collecting of turfgrass and golf course literature has now benefited turfgrass science and scholarship for the future,” said Pete Cookingham, head of the Turfgrass Administration Center. “His eye for high quality and unusual pieces, and a broad view of the discipline from the perspective of a practicing golf course superintendent, makes this a wonderful donation. We are most pleased to be able to make these available to the world because of Mr. Dieter’s generosity.”

The Dieter materials join the O. J. Noer Memorial Turfgrass Collection at Michigan State University. The Noer Collection and the James B Beard Turfgrass Library Collection form the strongest single public collection of turfgrass related content in the world.