Brewster, MA, is known as Cape Cod’s “Sea Captain’s Town”. In 1850 there were over 50 sea captains living in Brewster at one time; 115 have lived there since 1840. The golf holes at the Captains Golf Course are named after some of these sea-faring men.
When the original 18 holes were under construction, the Golf Commission at the time selected the name Shipmasters Golf Course for the new facility. Shipmaster was a title earned after schooling in fields from astronomy and navigation to money management and reading. Brewster’s fine school system prepared young boys for the many skills that would be required when they were at sea, commanding ships and being responsible for the needs of their crews. Brewster shipmasters were in high demand and captained many ships that sailed trade routes from Maine to China.
Though shipmaster was a title held in high esteem in the 1800’s, as the name of a golf course in 1984 it was, according to Golf Commission minutes, “frowned upon” by the Board of Selectmen. The Golf Commission went back to work and proposed a new name, the Captains Golf Course. The Selectmen approved the new name, and work continued in preparation for a May, 1985, grand opening. In 1997, Brian Silva, of Cornish, Silva & Mungeam, was hired to expand his original design. The new design was incorporated into the original course and in August, 1999, the new 36-hole layout was opened as Port and Starboard.