The South Brunswick IslandsHolden Beach, Ocean Isle Beach, and Sunset Beachare man-made barrier islands formed when the North Carolina section of the Intracoastal Waterway was constructed between 1930 and 1940. In the late 1940s, Odell Williamson dreamed of a tranquil, family-vacation island and began buying tracts of land that would later become Ocean Isle Beach. This seven-mile-long island was incorporated as the town of Ocean Isle Beach in 1959. Mannon C. Gore envisioned the three miles of Sunset Beach as a peaceful residential community when he purchased the island in 1955. With over eight miles of oceanfront, Holden Beach is the longest and the largest of the three islands in the group. Each island boasts a unique character and has remained quiet with pristine beaches and a focus on families.
About the Author
Pamela M. Koontz is an author and photojournalist. Some of her fondest memories are of exploring the South Brunswick Islands: walking the beach, fishing from the pier, checking turtle nests, and attending Sunday-morning service on the beach at Ocean Isle. Images within these pages are provided courtesy of the Gore, Williamson, and Holden families; Ingram Planetarium; and the Museum of Coastal Carolina.