The History of Sapphire Valley

Sapphire VAlley Historical Society


1946 - 1954

tatum surf and sky club


Tatum Wofford from Palm Beach operated the Tatum Surf Club, a beach, swim and water ski club in Florida. (Pictured to the right, the club was located on Collins Avenue, this structure today is part of the Four Points by Sheraton.)


Mr. Tatum envisioned a similar resort in the mountains of Western North Carolina and acquired the Sapphire Valley area in 1946.


Tatum Sky Club was born and the plans included an air strip, ice rink, and new cabins built around the valley.


There are many stories about how the Tatum Sky Club developed and how the old Fairfield Inn was used – one story alleges that the Sky Club was actually a ‘gentlemen’s’ club, but the details may very well be lost to history.


Mr Gene Howerdd, Sr. Founder of modern Sapphire Valley, acquired the property in 1954

Sapphire Valley History

1918 - 1954


We are developing this section.


Owners of the property known to us at this time were E.H.Jennings and Tatum Wofford, explained below.