In early 1948 Joe T. Gibbs (Sr.) acquired the property we now know as Lakewood Estates. In early June of that year he began to advertise the property for sale. He recorded the plat of the subdivision June 1, 1948 and a set of restrictions on June 14, 1948. One Sunday in mid June 1948 he picked my wife and me up in Houston and brought us to see the property. It sure wasn't much to look at. The streets were little more than bulldozer grading. Some of the hills were much steeper than today. The trail off Thurman Bend had a cedar pole entrance decoration. He told me it was to be a rustic area, with some restrictions, and only 6 lots were reserved as commercial use. They, by today's standards were not very good restrictions. The park area was reserved for all the property owners.
He told us he thought the view from lot 120 was the best in the sub-division. We returned to Houston and bought lot 120 June 25, 1948., his first sale in his subdivision. He also granted ,us the privilege of camping on" a waterfront lot he was reserving for himself. In the early days we didn't take many trips to the lot, and many times we wondered if we were lost as all the old landmarks seemed to change or disappear.
In 1951 Joe Gibbs (Sr.) made arrangements to get Pedernales to bring in electricity. In my review have not been able to determine when the first house was built in the subdivision, but would assume it was shortly after electricity was installed. If you have any additional information about this time please write us.
Sometime around 1960, there were several owners in the subdivision who either lived here or visited frequently and they decided Co put in a boat launching ramp. Funds were solicited from property owners. It was then understood that only those who contributed to the construction would be allowed to use the ramp- Although I lived in Houston and might only get up once a year. I contributed the requested $15.00.
The first record of the Lakewood Property Owners Protective Association shows up in 1969. It indicates 14 owners as members . Part of the low number of members might be a lack of information on the owners addresses. The number of members jumped to 28 in 1972, and remained more or less steady until 1977 when 12 new names, appeared on the list. There seems to have been a concerted effort by someone to locate the property owners. Obviously as owners sold, their names disappeared from the list.
Joe Gibbs Sr. died in 1971, a resident of Travis County. He still owned 51 lots, nearly one third of the subdivision. The restrictions were written to expire in June 1973. Perhaps partially due to Mr. Gibbs death, at a critical time, no action was taken to renew or extend them. His wife, Claire Lawson Gibbs was his beneficiary and she died in late 1982 or early 1983. She had sold all of the remaining lots in Lakewood Estates. The first documents in the Minutes folder is dated May 31, 1982. They show 19 owners (includes husband and wife as one owner). Business discussed included signs prohibiting use"of the park by persons others than members, and problems related to loss of deed restrictions. In July 1983, the membership adopted doubling the membership dues to $10.00 annually, and a membership drive to improve owner/member ratio. In October 1983 a meeting was held, after a covered dish lunch, the members approved improvement on the ramp. Dr. Gibbs (Jr.) gave a brief talk to support his position of ownership of Park. (After much study on the matter I now think he thought we were an easy touch for 10 or 15 thousand dollars).
After subsequent meetings with lawyers, the members decided to take the matter to court; and then for some unknown reason apparently did not. Most of the meetings continued to reflect problems with outsiders using park, docks, and the legal status of park.
It was brought up that our Articles of Association would expire and we needed to revise and update them. Then at a later meeting, it was decided that it would be much better to incorporate the Association to prevent liability to all owners of property in the subdivision.
It is interesting to note that the quality of new homes has been greatly increasing, as time goes by, and that more and more of the houses are full time residences. Both of these have contributed to an increase in your property values and the desirability of others to buy and live in Lakewood Estates.
~Charles R- Brown