Martin Subdivisions – Scenic Hills Has a History!

in Real Estate

One of the favored neighborhoods in our town of Martin is Scenic Hills with its charming street names–Bunny Lane, Strawberry Lane, Mockingbird Lane and Pine Tree Cove. Over the years, I’ve had clients ask me about the origin of the street names, and I went looking for the answer the other day. It turns out, it is a family thing!

Scenic Hills is a close-knit neighborhood located in the western section of Martin off of University Street. It is a convenient location with easy access to shopping, UTM and downtown. This is a community of caring neighbors who plan a very successful, annual neighborhood garage sale and host one of the largest turnouts of Halloween trick-or-treaters in the town. The car line into the neighborhood spills out onto the side of the highway on that day, and Martin police safely direct traffic in and out of the neighborhood.

Some in town can remember when this area was just farmland, including my father-in-law, Mickey Moore, who helped develop the neighborhood. In 1961, Robert Overton bought the land which consisted of gently rolling farmland and a thick stand of pine trees bordering what was then the “two-lane” Union City highway.

Mickey built the “first” home on this farm around 1962. Interestingly, this home wasn’t located in what is now the subdivision but on road frontage at Courtright Road. Tim, my husband, was a baby when the family moved to this two-story home which now has stately trees gracing the front yard and shading the drivers on their way to Wal-Mart. There were no additional streets at that time on the land.

A gravel driveway was added from the current subdivision entrance and branched to the left when J.B. Coley built the first house in what is now Scenic Hills. Between 1962 and 1965 several more homes were built and shared access from this gravel drive. This drive did not become an actual street until after Scenic Hills was established and the city took the drive in as part of the neighborhood.

In 1966, Overton Builders named the subdivision, Scenic Hills. According to Mickey, as developers, he and Robert planned to enhance the large, rolling and treeless stretch of farmland. Ten of the acres were cultivated into a “pick-your-own” strawberry patch. They hired local FFA boys from the high school to then plant tree seedlings in the rows of the strawberries knowing they would be laying in streets soon.

In 1968, Mickey built his family the first home to the right of the current entrance of the neighborhood. The road at that time branched to the right and ended just beyond the home. His driveway entered from the Union City highway. He said everyone thought he was crazy because he sited the home facing into the empty fields and the backyard facing the highway, but he knew the plans. So, the house was built “backwards.”

According to Mickey, one afternoon he and Robert found out that they had to quickly have the plat recorded and all of the streets named prior to qualifying for government loans they needed to develop the remainder of the subdivision. Mickey went home that evening with the subdivision plat in hand and spread it out on the kitchen table. Tim, his mom, Barbara, and his sisters, Gina and Terri, were pulled into the decision making.

scenic_hills_strawberry_laneOf course, Strawberry Lane was easy and fell into place quickly since remnants of the pick-your -own patch were still visible.

scenic_hills_mockingbird_laneMockingbird Lane – Mickey says there was a mockingbird that year that nearly drove Tim crazy because it would light on their chimney and make all sorts of racket interrupting Tim’s tv time. Hence it was an easy decision to include the mockingbird in their street’s naming.

scenic_hills_bunny_laneBunny Lane – The rabbits abounded in this stretch of farmland. Tim says he remembers trailing behind his dad and others while they rabbit hunted this area. Mickey recalls it was some of the best rabbit hunting land in Martin. So, Bunny Lane found its origin.

scenic_hills_pine_tree_covePine Tree Cove, although the first driveway into the subdivision, was the last “street” added to the neighborhood. Mickey says he believes it found its name due to the beautiful pine trees hiding the homes on this drive from the highway. Unfortunately, these trees had to come down when the two-lane grew to a four-lane.

Now, well-manicured lawns, shade trees and quiet streets surround and highlight the 65 homes in Scenic Hills. It is a desirable location for many who move to Martin and homes sell well— when you can find people who are moving out! In my next blog on the neighborhood we will visit with the neighbors, Vernon and Aloha Prather, who are planning their 40th year celebration in Scenic Hills in 2009!

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