From Leland Speed: A Brief History of Eastover
In 1948, Katherine and Leland Speed decided to build a new home on the land that is now Eastover. Mr. Frank Fort, an architect with the firm of Fort and White here in Jackson, did the land plan, as well as the design of their home.
My father’s original plan had been to simply run a single road from Ridgewood Road to where Meadowbrook and Eastover Drive intersect. Mr. Fort persuaded him to raise his sights and go to Houston, Texas and take a look at River Oaks – the highest end residential development in Houston.
There they visited with Mr. Hugh Potter, the developer of River Oaks, and he shared his insights as to what to do and not to do. Eastover’s original covenants were virtually identical to River Oaks.
Construction started in 1949 on the first street, Eastover Drive, and on the first lake, as well as my parent’s home. Lot sales at first were brisk until 1950, when the war broke out in Korea. Sales stopped cold. Memories of World War II, when there was no new home construction, were still fresh in people’s minds. In fact, sales didn’t really pick up until the summer of 1954 and stayed strong from there. (Trust me, you could really get a deal on a lot during the early 1950’s.) The plan, as executed, was to continue to open new sections as the market absorbed the then developed lots.
This continued through the 1950’s, 60’s and 70’s, and resulted in over 400 lots in some 38 sections. Jointly with Jim Child of Wise, Carter and Child law firm, which handled legal matters for the development, we are working on a more detailed history of Eastover. As you might imagine, there are a lot of good stories!