Len Johnson is a familiar name to area tennis buffs, but many of the younger ones may not know of his accomplishments. If the pro tennis tour had been as big during Johnson's heyday as it is now, he might have been Jamestown's only touring player.
Johnson won the Jamestown City Singles title 23 times and was part of the championship doubles team 19 times. At one point he won the singles crown 16 straight times. Johnson retired the Golden Trophy at the Chautauqua Institution Toumament by winning it three straight times, 1954-56. He also was a member of the winning doubles team. Johnson won the Chautauqua County Open singles title five times and the doubles three times between 1950 and 1960. He won the Tri-City Championship in 1950 and 1951.
He was the first Jamestowner ever to reach the finals of the Westem New York Toumament where he lost to Len Treash of Rochester, 6-4, 8-6. To reach the finals, Johnson defeated two past champions. Later he teamed with Walt Lubes of Rochester to become the first Jamestown man and last to win the Westem New York Toumament doubles title.
In 1963 Johnson was presented the Athlete of the Year trophy by the committee of the St. John's Holy Name Society. He remained active playing tennis and operated Len's Pro Shop for many years.
Len Johnson was inducted into the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame in 1986. He died in 2005.
Join the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame
A membership program is available to persons who are interested in preserving the history of sports in Chautauqua County and honoring the outstanding individuals who have created our cherished sports memories.
In addition to helping the CSHoF carry out its twin missions of maintaining a hall of fame and exhibit hall, members will receive several value-added benefits for their membership fee.
To join, please contact Russ Ecklund at
716-484-7684 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Sports Hall of Fame is dependent on the volunteers who staff the hall. They are dedicated to the hall and the athletes honored there. The Board of Directors greatly appreciates the time and effort given by the volunteers.
The CSHoF can use additional volunteers to be at the hall during the day to greet visitors. To volunteer contact Randy Anderson at 716-640-6219.