It is generally accepted that modern golf developed in
Scotland in the 15th and 16th centuries.  The earliest U.S. golf organization dates to
the late 1700s but it was not until the late 1800s to early 1900s that the
popularity of golf erupted across the U.S.

The first golf course in Transylvania County was at Lake
Toxaway.  “Extensive Improvements and
Additions for Lake Toxaway Hotel Property” were announced in the Sylvan Valley News on November 6,
1911.  This included a 9-hole golf course
and a 20 room clubhouse for guests at the Toxaway Inn.  That course, which was located near present
day Lake Cardinal, closed in 1916 when the dam burst ending Lake Toxaway’s
tourism boom. 

In the 1960s the dam was rebuilt and the lake restored.  The new Lake Toxaway Country Club included an
18-hole golf course.  The old Moltz
mansion, with its pool and tennis and croquet courts, served as the club house.  Since that time improvements have included new
clubhouses, a new pool and tennis courts, as well as major renovations to the
golf course and croquet lawn.

In 1912 a man-made lake was built in the Seeoff community
with the intention of creating a resort that would include a golf course.  In 1921 plans were made for a summer resort
with a lake and golf course in the Blantyre community.  Neither project was successful however.

A group of golfers at the Hunter home which served as the original Club House

for the Brevard Country Club.

Plans for the Brevard Country Club and golf course, a half
miles northwest of Brevard, were announced in 1925.  The first 9-holes were opened the next summer
with the Hunter Mansion serving as the temporary clubhouse.  Original plans were for 18-holes, a
residential development and a large hotel. 

A 1929 tourism brochure states, “For scenic grandeur the
Brevard golf course can hardly be equalled anywhere.  Part of the course is located in the wide
valley of the French Broad River, but the most fascinating fairways are
situated on rolling plateaus that command a view of the entire links with
distant mountain peaks in every back-ground.”

Miss Barbara Talley at the Ecusta’s 3-hole practice course at

Camp Strauss, July 1953.

Although the Brevard Country Club never grew as planned it
did serve the community for about 40 years until the communities of Lake
Toxaway (1965), Glen Cannon (1966) and Sherwood Forest (1967) built golf
courses.  Connestee Falls golf course
opened in 1974.

Today nearly 50% of the golf courses in the world are in the
US.  In Transylvania County there are
currently four golf courses—Burlingame Country Club, Connestee Falls, Lake
Toxaway and Sherwood Forest.

Visit the Smithsonian’s Museum on Main Street exhibit,
“Hometown Teams” at the Library through October 24, 2015.

 Photographs and information
for this column are provided by the Rowell Bosse North Carolina Room,
Transylvania County Library.  Visit the
NC Room during regular library hours (Monday-Friday) to learn more about our
history and see additional photographs. 
For more information, comments or suggestions contact Marcy at
[email protected] or 828-884-3151 X242.

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(828) 884-3151

212 S Gaston St, Brevard, NC 28712