When Gene Howerdd, Sr. saw the verdant Sapphire Valley, bordered by rocky mountain vistas and laced with crystal trout streams, he knew he had found the perfect site for a level, cool, and breathtakingly beautiful golf course.
The then retired Executive of Georgia Pacific and member of Augusta National, and his wife Katie, purchased a 2,000 acre tract that the golf course is on and a 6,000 acre tract that had an inn and a 200 acre lake on it.
The inn was renamed Sapphire Valley Inn and together with the golf course was referred to as The Sapphire Valley Inn and Golf Course. The year was 1954.
The renowned architect, George Cobb, was commissioned to design the golf course, and 100 friends were invited to join “The Club”…. for $2,000.
(Note the winsock on top of the Clubhouse - used by those bold enough to land on the driving range.)
Sapphire Valley Historical Society
64 East, Sapphire, North Carolina 28774, United States
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