In his heyday, Charles B. (Charlie) Smith Sr. of Gastonia, North Carolina was ranked the No. 3 amateur in the country, trailing only Jack Nicklaus and Deane Beman. He was Carolinas Golf of the year in 1961 and 1963. He took up the game with a borrowed set of clubs of left-handed clubs in high school, his farther passed down a right handed set and his game flourished. Smith won the inaugural Donald Ross Invitational in 1948 and the Southern Conference championship in 1952, as a senior at The Citadel.
In 1960, he won the North & South and Southern Amateur titles, and played on the U.S. Walker Cup teams in 1961 and 63. In 1962, Smith added the Eastern Amateur to his list of victories and won the Carolina Amateur two years after older brother Dave lost in the final. The brothers won The Dunes Club National 4-Ball titles in 1962 and in 1964, the year Charlie added a second Azalea Amateur to his first from 1958. He played in the The Masters Tournament four straight years (1962-65) missing the cut three times by a single stroke. He also played in the U.S. Open at Oakmont Hills in 1961 and Oakmont in 1962. He was a three-time quarter-finalist in the U.S. Amateur.