Neighborhood Meeting, Sept. 17, 2019
Come early @ 6:30 for pizza and treats.
Bush Beans Corporate Headquarters
Lonas and Weisgarber
Mayor Madeline Rogero will be here to give us a talk.
Knoxville Police Department will report on
GETTING INVOLVED IN OUR
meets quarterly. Officers are elected by members of the Board. Contact Sharon
Kime, if you are interested in serving on the Board or some other type of
involvement in LDCA (e.g., signs, newsletter, facebook). We have historic
information, Timbercrest and the Lonas Dr. area, and files from past representatives that we
need assistance in reviewing.
Board members: Kim Watt: Leon Ridenour 588-9759, Far View Hills: Polly Doka 584 7351 firstname.lastname@example.org, Hollywood Hills:
Vacant, Lonas Drive: Bill Terry 556 5966 email@example.com
and Sharon Kime 584 1224
Timbercrest: Kirk Anderson
588 3664 firstname.lastname@example.org,
Weisgarber Heights: Steve Watson, (email@example.com),
Wesley Heights: Vacant. Find us at
and Incomplete History of Lonas Drive
name came from the original Post Civil War occupants of the area. The Lonas
family cemetery is located in the Westview area of Middlebrook Pk. The first two sizeable houses in the Lonas
area were built by Matthew W. Kirby in 1935. The Kirby Farm was 700 acres. He was known for growing crops and had a very
large strawberry patch which is now Highland Cemetery where he is buried. Kirby’s house is the stone house on Weisgarber
next to the Church of the Savior and now serves as the offices for the church. At the same time his son Ralph built the house
at 5417 Lonas. Ralph’s Grandson Bill
Terry and his wife Terri live in that house today. Matthew Kirby was the owner
of Willowbrook Milling Company, a four story structure, which was located on
the site where Bush Bros. Corp. offices are today.
The first two neighborhoods nearest Weisgarber
were developed by three sisters from the Matthew Kirby family. The sisters, Evelyn Kirby Kelly, Mary Kirby
and Margaret Kirby Taylor developed Wesley Heights. One of the street s was named
after Evelyn. Other Streets in the area are variations of the Kirby name, Kirbury
and Kirby Road.
purchased part of the Kriby Farm and developed Timbercrest in the 60’s. There are about 200 homes in Timbercrest and
new homes have been added recently. Timbercrest
has a pool and park area for residents and a neighborhood association which
host events throughout the year. Kirk Anderson, a long time resident of
Timbercrest, was named “Neighbor of the Year 2019” by the City of Knoxville.
Hills was developed in the 50’s to 70’s by Cliff Hensley. He purchased that
parcel which was mostly cleared farmland from the original owners, Al and
Minnie Lonas. A few of the original homeowners still occupy homes in Far View
Hills. The first phase of development
consisted of 75 homes, some with stunning views of the mountains. The newer
part of Far View Hills currently has 25 homes, active construction sites and lots for future development.
The Kim Watt,
Middlebrook Heights, area is a combination of older cottages and mid century
homes. The late Bill Ogle built many of
the apartments in this area. The Kim Watt section of Lonas Drive is also home
to El Tipico market that was previously “Ogle’s Market” and served as a center
of neighborhood activities for many years.
Two brothers, Kim and Frank Watt owned most of the land on that end of
Lonas that intersects with Middlebrook Pike.
end of Lonas Drive is home to Bush Brothers Corporate Headquarters. South
College is on the Eastern end and Pilot Oil Corporate Headquarters is located
at 5500 Lonas Drive.
folks to add information or stories to this project. We have a good amount of
information from one of the original members of the Lonas Drive Community
Association that needs review if someone would like to help with that project.
Historic Structures Report of the Matthew Kirby House contains a historical
analysis, evaluation of the current conditions, and recommendations for the
house. The purpose of the study is to
document the house by researching the property, owner(s), use(s), and
architectural elements. A research team of graduate students comprised of J.
Estey, K. Kaczor, D. Lowry. and E. Washburn from the University of
Tennessee-Knoxville conducted the study for Interior Design 531.
INFORMATION ON MATTHEW W. KIRBY AND MARTHA C. KIRBY
Matthew W. Kirby was a native of West Knoxville, Tennessee. He was born February 9, 1877 in the area now
known as Farragut and died in February of 1958. Mr. Kirby was a true
entrepreneur for his day. He grew many crops, including strawberries and he even served
as president of the Knoxville Strawberry Association. (Knoxville Journal,
1958) Additionally, he was the owner of the Willowbrook Milling Company. The milling company was on his property north of
Lonas Road, at the intersection of Lonas and Weisgarber Road. (Knoxville City
Directory, 1937) Willowbrook Mill was a four-story structure and used for milling
crops he grew for himself and the public. The
mill fell into neglect and in the 1950's his daughter Mary had it demolished (J.
Johnson, personal communication, October 21, 1996).
was a real estate investor in the community. (Knoxville Journal, 1958) At one
time, he owned considerable parcels of land
in West Knoxville. Although Kirby purchased the property as farmland, he
later sold parcels for subdivisions and shopping centers. (J. Johnson, personal
communication, October 21, 1996) He owned most of the property that included
land for West Town Mall, Highland Memorial Cemetery, and farms on Northshore
Drive. His nickname was "Squire Matt" because of his association with
the Knox County Court. He served as a Justice of the Peace until 1948. Mr.
Kirby had an interest in the development of Black Angus cattle keeping them on
his property (Knoxville Journal, 1958).
Martha C. Kirby with a child
In Knox County on March 26, 1902, Matthew Kirby married Martha Ellen
Cunningham of Morristown, Tennessee, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. W.B. Cunningham (Marriage Record
Book, 1901-1905). The Kirbys were founders and life long members of the Erin
Presbyterian Church located on Lockett Road in the Bearden area of West Knoxville. Mrs. Kirby served as president of the Women's association of the church. She was
also an active member of the community (Knoxville News Sentinel, 1969).
The Kirbys had four sons, Sam, Ralph, Herman, Woodrow, and three
daughters, Mary, Margaret, and Evelyn (Will Book 24 352-1958 #81). For
additional family information please
see Appendix A. Only four of the children, Woodrow and the three daughters,
grew up in the Weisgarber house. The older sons, Sam and Ralph, built
homes of their own on adjoining property. Their fourth son Herman died in 1932 at the age of eighteen (J.
Johnson, personal communication, October 21, 1996).
Matthew Kirby had an office in downtown Knoxville at the Bank of Knoxville
members remembered Mr. Kirby going to his office every week to collect money
from his rental property (P. Johnson, personal communication, October 21,
If you have
information to add please call Polly Doka at 865 584 7351 or pdoka at comcast.net
If anyone has any ideas on what you would like to see on this web page please
e-mail me. As always this will be a work in progress. e-mail whdoka at comcast. net (change the at to @ this reduces spam)