Some Bent Tree History

The photo below (circa 1972) shows an old smokehouse that was built on land that is now at the bottom of Lake Tamarack.  The structure was estimated to have been built around 1870 and was moved out of the way when the lake was filled.  It was made of hand-hewn American Chestnut logs, and the door frames were put together with square nails.  The tin roof and the clapboards near the top were added later.

Old smokehouse in Bent Tree (photo circa 1972)

Old smokehouse in Bent Tree (photo circa 1972)

Before BTCI (summary of posts, so far)

Between the flu and other things, I definitely got off track from posting about Bent Tree’s corporate history.  I’m doing a recap post today, mainly to help me remember where I left off.

Before BTCI Part 8 – Bent Tree’s Club Villas (1977)

from 1977 Villas ad

from 1977 Villas ad

From 1969 to 1976, Liberty had spent more than $8 million on land and development of Bent Tree. The project had been losing money for several years. During the recession, according to HUD property reports, Bent Tree suffered losses of $334,000 in 1973 and $316,000 in 1974.  After the collapse of the real estate market in 1973, and through the recession that ended in 1975, Bent Tree marketing and growth was basically stagnant.

By 1977, with some optimism in the second home market returning, and Club Corporation handling the amenities, Liberty decided to build villas in Bent Tree.  By March 1977, construction was underway.  Click here for a 2016 post with more information on the Villas.  When the villas project began, there were only about 130 single family homes in Bent Tree.  The original plan called for 74 villas, which would have significantly increased the number of completed homes.

Before BTCI Part 4 – enter Spratlin Financial (March 1970)

Recap:

  • 08/26/1969 – date of incorporation for Bent Tree Corporation (under The Liberty Corporation)
  • 09/31/1969 – agreement making Spratlin Associates, Inc. the developer and marketer of the new Bent Tree resort community
  • 02/20/1970 – CC&Rs recorded for the first two sections of Bent Tree (Little Pine Mountain Section and the Hendricks Mountain Section)

The next notable corporate milestone was on March 13, 1970, when Spratlin Financial Corporation was duly incorporated in Georgia “…for the following general purposes:  to lend money and otherwise extend credit, invest and reinvest its funds, and take and hold real property as security for the payment of of the funds as loaned or invested or for credit so extended…”.  A conduit for financing lot sales was in place.

from a 1970 security deed

from a 1970 security deed

Security deed after security deed recorded

Security deed after security deed recorded

Before BTCI Part 2 – The First CC&Rs

Excerpt from another 1970 advertisement for Bent Tree

Excerpt from another 1970 advertisement for Bent Tree

To recap yesterday’s post:

  • 08/29/1969 – date of incorporation for Bent Tree Corporation
  • 09/31/1969 – agreement making Spratlin Associates, Inc. the developer and marketer of the new Bent Tree resort community

The next big milestone in the corporate history was the filing of the first CC&Rs for the community.  The Declaration of Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions, Bent Tree, Little Pine Mountain Section and the Declaration of Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions, Bent Tree, Hendricks Mountain Section were filed for record on February 19, 1970 and recorded in Pickens County on February 20, 1970.

Before BTCI Part 1 – The Bent Tree Corporation, The Liberty Corp and Spratlin Associates

excerpt from 1970 advertisement for Bent Tree

excerpt from 1970 advertisement for Bent Tree

The image above is from an early advertisement for Bent Tree.  Bent Tree’s corporate structure history is interesting; I’ve posted bits and pieces on this website over the years, but have never posted the entire evolution.  I’m going to try follow through with a basic corporate history summary, over the next week or so, without going off on too many tangents.

So…in the beginning there was Bent Tree Corporation (not to be confused with Bent Tree Community, Inc.).

Bent Tree Corporation (a subsidiary of The Liberty Corporation) was incorporated under the laws of the State of Georgia on August 29, 1969 “…for the following purposes: to purchase, lease, or otherwise acquire, own, hold, improve, use and otherwise deal in and with, real and personal property, or any interest therein.”

At its inception, BTC’s Board of Directors consisted of six members from The Liberty Corporation (note – in December 1968, The Liberty Corporation set up Liberty Properties Group, Inc. to handle its foray into residential/recreational developments).

On September 3, 1969 Bent Tree Corporation and Spratlin Associates, Inc. entered into an agreement whereby Spratlin would develop and market the Bent Tree project.