Murray County looks to purchase Holt House
SLAYTON -- The Murray County Commissioners are looking into the possibility of purchasing a house -- and not just any house. They want to buy a $169,000 house. The Dinehart/Holt House was built in 1893 for one of Slayton's first bankers, C.E. Din...
SLAYTON -- The Murray County Commissioners are looking into the possibility of purchasing a house -- and not just any house.
They want to buy a $169,000 house.
The Dinehart/Holt House was built in 1893 for one of Slayton's first bankers, C.E. Dinehart. It remained in the family for decades, with Judge John Holt, grandson of C.E. Dinehart, being the last member of the family to live there. It was later purchased by the Tom and Tammy Buesing family in the mid-1990s, but is now up for sale.
Talk of building an addition on to the current Murray County Historical Museum has been dropped -- the house, which sits within sight of the museum, is now preferred by the Murray County Historical Society.
"They are 100 percent in favor of the project," Chairman Bob Moline said Tuesday.
As commissioners discussed the house during their Tuesday meeting, Worthington's Dayton House was mentioned several times -- with comparisons made of what the Holt House could become. Proposed uses for the house include display of historical artifacts, special events hosted by the historical society, tours, programs, exhibits and open houses.
Murray County Public Relations Director Christy Surprenant told the board a crew from the Minnesota Historical Society was coming out later this week to look the house over structurally and discuss with the county what could be done to market it.
Among necessary considerations are: how much of the house is up to code; what needs to be done to make at least the first floor handicap accessible; and general structural integrity. Because the house is already on the National Register of Historic Places, an elevator would not be required.
The house has six bedrooms and two baths, more than 3,000 finished square feet and a covered porch that runs the length of the house. The listing price of the house is $169,900.
"Right now, it is still on the open market," Moline said. "Anyone can come in and make an offer."
Moline said there has been contact with the owners and a verbal agreement that they will contact the county if they get an offer from anyone else.
"This would bring a whole new marketing aspect to town," Commissioner Kevin Vickerman said. "I think we should aggressively look at it."
While all the commissioners seemed to like the idea, Bill Sauer and Gerald Magnus questioned the price.
"Have real estate prices in Slayton doubled?" Sauer asked.
In other business, the board:
l Heard from Murray County Racing Association (MCRA) president Brian Postma about cash flow and tickets sold for the 2006 racing season.
"We draw a lot of people and make a big economic impact on the county," Postma said. "We employ 40 to 45 people every Friday night."
Postma said the MCRA wanted to voice an opinion to help along the proposed grandstand improvements and form a small committee to help with ideas and plans for a concession/bathroom.
"I would welcome that input," Vickerman said.
Moline explained that, while the grandstand project is important to the board and the county, there are several other building projects that are also as badly needed.
According to Postma's figures, the average attendance per race night in the grandstand was 763, with highest attendance being more than 1,100. He pointed out that no one in the MCRA makes any kind of personal gain from the venture other than to provide quality entertainment.
"The association is a great thing for Murray County," he added.
- Accepted a bid from Diamond Vogel on blinds for the Commissioner Room for $319 and a bid from Slayton Office Supply for three office chairs for $1,080. On the chairs, there was a lower bid from Davis Typewriter, with a difference of about $13 per unit, but the commissioners opted to accept the slightly higher bid, preferring to buy local.