Our beginnings date back to 1870 when the Carson & Tahoe Lumber and Fluming Company, formed by D.L. Bliss, Henry Yerington and Darius Mills owned this land. From that time until around 1890, 750 board feet of lumber and 500,000 cords of wood were clear cut from Tahoe Forests.
Sometime in the 1930s George Whittell bought over 40,000 acres of Nevada lakeside land, including more than 20 miles of shoreline from the Carson & Tahoe Lumber and Fluming Company as well as other land holders. Then in 1957 George Whittell wished to sell an 87- acre track of his property which included 3,800 feet of Tahoe lake front. A man named R.E. Fraser told a friend named John Cheney about this parcel of land and Cheney came up to view the property. On October 1, 1957 the property was bought for $360,000. In order to afford to develop the property, stocks were sold. Stock holders were listed as, John Cheney, R.E. Fraser, Ferdie Sievers and Arthur Berberian. Other individuals and owners involved in the original development of Skyland were Clarence and Juanita Luckey and Wilford Evans, Fraser’s son-in-law. Together, some or all, formed “Stockton Garden Homes, Inc.”, with offices in Stockton, California whose business was buying, subdividing, building, and then selling homes. The original stockholders may have been given lots as payment for their monetary investment in the business. They were then able to keep or sell them as they saw fit. Skyland unit #1 was completed in the fall of 1958 and unit #2 was began January 14, 1959. The lots in unit #3 were deeded to Fraser’s son-in-law, Wilford Evans. As with most newly formed communities financial issues plagued the development.
On May 8, 1964, ordinance numbered 133, “An ordinance initiating proceedings for the organization of the Skyland General Improvement District…”was proposed by Commissioner H.L. Dressler. (Bill no. 135, ordinance no.135 of Douglas County, Nevada) Douglas county commissioners Settelmeyer, Dressler and Pruett voted and approved/adopted the ordinance on the same day as an emergency measure. The ordinance was in full force and effect from and after May 22, 1964, the second date of publication. The Skyland GID first five taxpaying electors and board members of our district were: I.W. Borda, Harold Dayton, Loran Barber, Jack Van Fleet, and Emil Pardee. Many more improvements and changes occurred over the years as Douglas County continued to grow and Skyland evolved into a vibrant passionate community.
Where did the name "Skyland" come from?
Research leads us back to the early 1900s before George Whittell owned the property.The oldest remaining structure in the community is a beautiful, massive, double sided stone fireplace located at the corner of Skyland Drive and Skyland Court close to the homeowner's beach. The name "Skyland" is engraved on the mantle at each side. When the current owner bought the property, he was told that the site was once used as a rehabilitation center for soldiers after World War 1.You can see some remnant of the walls of the barracks protruding out of the side of the chimney. The year 1924 is engraved on one hearth and the words "Courage, Honor (symbolized), Loyalty" on the other. Thus an unknown member of the US Military most likely came up with the spiritual name.
Note: “Skyland Heritage” information was gathered and compiled by Ellen Rosenberg through county records, online research and information regarding “Stockton Garden Homes, Inc.” Skyland GID formation history obtained from a certified copy of documents compiled in 1998 by Thomas E. Perkins then acting Deputy District Attorney at the request of Vic Beelick. This “Skyland Heritage” is only intended to be inspirational and informational to current and future residents. Any additional or conflicting history is always welcome as we strive to learn more about our community.