This History of Big Canoe in Northern Georgia
From the beginning, Big Canoe has been an ideal representation of a tight-knit mountain community and a beacon of hope for natural preservation in the surrounding neighborhoods. Along with the custom designed Big Canoe homes and Big Canoe amenities, this gated north Georgia mountain community is a perfect place for retirees to relax and enjoy the history of the area and the Blue Ridge Mountains.
The area known now as Big Canoe, was once an undeveloped acreage of land owned by the Paleo Indians more than 15,000 years ago. Between that time, the Cherokee Indians owned land in the area and more in Northern Georgia. The trees could talk about the history during the War of 1812 and the infamous gold rush period. From mining to marble, the Big Canoe area held value to many people, companies and organizations. Crops have been grown and educational institutions were built and served their time. The area was owned for a while by the Tate Family long before the Big Canoe amenities and Big Canoe homes were available in 2013.
By 1966, Tom Cousins and his father, I.W. Cousins, purchased the property from the Tate Family, and they were unsure of what the area would become. Originally, the owners wanted to share the gorgeous views and supreme terrain with companies looking for the perfect place for an employee retreat. The dream was modified a bit when the father and son duo partnered with Ford Foundation and Sea Pines Company. Instead, the area transformed into permanent luxury retreat for families and retirees as a gated north Georgia mountain community.
By 1987, the wheels were in motion to create this community with the Byrne Corporation of Georgia. Ten years later the dream became a reality when the Byrne Corporation of Georgia teamed up with Greenwood Development Corporation and became the Big Canoe LLC., which manages the gated north Georgia mountain community that is known today.
This year, Real Estate Scorecard honored Big Canoe again with a 2014 Bliss Award™ as the Best Mountain Community of the Year.
Throughout the years, the community was preserved with the similar visions of the different owners. The Tate family had a logging business, but they kept their business mostly in the conifers. The Cousins wanted strict design plans for residents in his vision. Today, the mission to preserve the property is as strong as ever. Big Canoe homes and Big Canoe amenities, like golf and tennis, are available to residents but the scene is still a retreat in the woods. Manicured yards and urbanized developments are not common here, because the owners and residents want to maintain a natural forest and untapered look. It is meant to be a retreat and it is. This friendly retirement-oriented gated mountain community offers privacy and serenity. Homes at Big Canoe begin under $200k and mountain homes like the one in the photo above can easily exceed $1 million.