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Century-old building on Huntsville’s courthouse square to be auctioned off

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - A piece of Huntsville's history goes up on the auction block next week. The old Huntsville - Madison County Law Library will be sold to the highest bidder on November 30th. Over the years, the building has been a dry goods store, and for more than 30 years was home to J.C. Penney's.

As buildings go, this one seems quite unique. Nestled away on Eastside Square in downtown Huntsville, it dates back to almost 1900.

Originally it was a dry goods store for several decades, until 1931.

J.C. Penney's then occupied the building through the mid-1960's. Portions of the old coin delivery system are still in place up on the 3rd floor.

After that, it became known as the Elbert H. Parson's Law Library.

But the library has moved, and the Madison County Commission now has the building up for sale, in hopes of furthering the redevelopment of downtown.

So what's in the building's future?

“You never know about what it's going to do,” according to auctioneer Daniel Culps of Fowler Auction and Real Estate, the company handling the sale. He adds, “It had a lot of interest, had a ton of interest from local developers, lawyers, you know, some restaurant inquiries about putting a restaurant in."

It's also unique in that it's rare now for real estate to become available on the square. So, not only the location but the building's design leave it open to many possibilities.

“You can tell by the big, metal archways it was built very well for its time,” Culps points out.

But the time has come to start a new chapter in the building's history. And that new chapter begins when the building is auctioned off, at high noon on November 30.

Culps tells us if you're interested in buying the building, bring your checkbook. He says they hope the property brings in excess of a million dollars.

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