Timber Ridge History
Land of Isles and Lagoons
by Dan Ellis
With the formation of the Mexican Gulf Land Development Corporation by Elliot and Leland Henderson in 1904, began a cycle of sales promotions of the areas now known as Henderson Point and Pass Christian Isles. However, due to a hurricane in 1906, followed by the onset of World War I, the project was slowed.
In July, 1926, the Pass Christian Isles Company was formed which began dredging activity beginning at a few hundred feet north of the L&N Railroad tracks at Henderson Point and extended to Bayou Portage. The dredged soil was used to build up the occasional low spots that were lower than 12-feet above sea-level. The planned 1400-acre development was unique for the Mississippi Coast by establishing a large yacht harbor basin several hundred feet square. It connected the waters of Bay of St. Louis with a series of inland lagoons and waterways that created Pass Christian Isles. The lagoons and canals were designed to wind through the development for a distance of nearly seven miles.
The wooden Bay-bridge scheduled for earlier construction was not completed until 1928. In the meantime, the Drackett Ferry carried passengers and cars to and fro between Henderson Point and Bay St. Louis with an alternate route that coursed around the north-side of the Bay through the villages at Kiln and DeLisle before reaching Pass Christian.
A million-dollar plaza was also planned to be strung along Highway 90, at the Bay, with anticipations of it being the hub of a business district for Pass Christian Isles. A Mediterranean architectural design included a commercial hotel, an amphitheater, a restaurant, an expansive patio, and two high-class stores, with the entire compound surrounded by an 18-hole gulf course. However, only the resort hotel was completed, which became the famous Inn By the Sea, which included a very small golf course.
Soon afterwards, the "Great Depression of the 30s" had its toll as the project fell into receivership to bank creditors in New Orleans. Even the hotel languished and was eventually taken over as a Merchant Marine Training Academy in 1942, and later abandoned.
In 1976, the old buildings were razed and the Gulfshore Baptist Assembly Mission Complex was built at a cost that exceeded its original estimate of $13,000,000.
by Dan Ellis
In 1946, Wallace Walker of New Orleans bought the defunct corporation, Pass Christian Isles Company, along with its assets, through a holding company known as Sunset Realty. Walker had the land re-surveyed, modified the plats, and subdivided Henderson Point into two legal subdivisions called Henderson Point Heights and Pass Christian Isles. Historic Henderson Point maintained its original area, developing as a resi-dential and commercial area with gambling and entertainment establishments.
A few years later, Walker sold off the Timber Ridge property to a development combine named New South Corporation, which was headed by Jamar Adcock of Monroe, Louisiana.
The Pass Christian Isles Golf Club was incorporated in 1952 and completed in 1953, the same year that the Henderson Point - Pass Christian Isles Civic Association was organized.
Timber Ridge was developed slowly with vigorous land sales, but with scant residential construction during the early 60s.
After Hurricane Camille, sales promotion resulted in Pete Fountain cutting T.V. commercials, a grand celebration at Treasure Cove marina for the driving of pilings for an anticipated yacht club, and a parachutist jumping from a plane to land at the point of Bayou Boisdoré (Malini).
In 1972, three years after Camille, and the City of Pass Christian had rebuilt the necessary infrastructure that Timber Ridge would be dependent upon. Advertisements stated that 6 1/2 miles of roads had been paved and that the "Yacht Club" at Treasure Point would begin immediate construction and made a projection that 100 homes would be completed by the following Spring.
Fairway Drive looking north and the Bob and Dottie house at Fairway and Timberlane.
Below --- the Tennis Courts and Picnic shelters.
Due to a bitter image left with the general public by the development company's false projections and poor administration, a change of name took place and the area being called "Bay Colony." The sales office was located at the head of the main entranceway, until it was burned down. Some people claim that it burned twice in one night.
Eventually, the transfer of assets was bestowed upon the Property Owners Association, being served up with a Silver Tray that was presented to then POA president, Dan D'Antoni. Dantoni’s wife, Ellie, led the cause to have the name changed back to Timber Ridge after Hurricane Elena destroyed the old Bay Colony sign.
During the mid-70s and early 80s, weekend evenings at the PCI Golf Club were hopping for the in-crowd from the surrounding area. Every month, a 19th-Hole party was organized and hosted by one or two of the local resident families. These gala affairs were festive and went on for hours on end, nurtured by food, drink, music, and dance.
In the mid-eighties, the Women's Club was instigated by Mrs. John Wilson and Ellie D'Antoni.
In 1995, the annual Timber Ridge Mardi Gras parade heralded its first "floats"— as introduced by Dot Buccola and Doris Buchert.
Also, in 1995, the very merry Christmas boat parade was started by the Pass Christian Isles folks — resulting in a stream of lighted boats that creates a fairyland on water.
In 1999, the "Italian Opening" was inaugurated by Shirley and Frank Cefalu, and has grown into an exciting weekend for all.
Pass Christian Isles Golf Club
by Dan Ellis
Pass Christian Isles Golf Club, Inc. was incorporated in April of 1952. Prior to that, the area abounded in wild game for local hunters and was used as open range for cattle. At some time during its history it was also used as a local race track for quarter-horses. Even today, it is not unusual to find a red fox or a young white-tail deer jauntily crossing the road bed. The surrounding area is a bird sanctuary where bird-watchers frequently take photographs of feathered and furred creatures of the woods and thickets.
The Golf Clubhouse is located in the heart of Timber Ridge amidst tall yellow pines, Live oaks, and magnolias. The well-kept, manicured greens of the Pass Christian Isles Golf Club made a cut through both Timber Ridge and Pass Christian Isles providing a Country Club ambiance. The 18 holes of play can be found along natural and man-made ravines and ponds. The lovely Bayou Boisdoré, Golden Woods, cuts its path through the fairways, attended by a wooden bridge providing access across it for carts and golfers. The tree-lined fairways and well-bunkered small greens make it a challenge for golfers of all abilities. Some of the Coast's most challenging holes are encountered along the 6,480 yards of play.
Timber Ridge POA was incorporated on August 11, 1975 --- and in August 1985 --- was annexed into the City of Pass Christian.
The few condos which exist, for the most part are kept in good condition and with responsible tenants.
That is, prior to Katrina brought most of them tumbling down.