George Beckwith of Goodman Missouri, got a surprising phone call recently from a lawyer, informing him that he soon would be an owner of a 19th-century courthouse in Connecticut.
Seems back in the early 1800s his family owned the property and the deal was that if the structure ever stopped being a courthouse, the building, built in 1889, complete with clock tower, would revert to the family’s descendants. Courthouse activities indeed ceased recently and here we are.
The lucky beneficiary had no use for a courthouse and he was actually was able to find some non profit preservation trust, that agreed to buy the property at a bargain basement price.
I ask, had he not located this purchaser, how would he have disposed of this legacy? I imagine he would have had to list it for sale with a real estate agency. Let’s call it Arthur King Realty, a (not too well known) realty company from New York. I can just envisage the listing specs.
" Just listed.
Spectacular property, set in prestigious Litchfield Green, backing onto Jake’s Pond. Nestled amongst the oak trees stretching out of nearby Blackacre State Park. Walking distance to parks, churches and Aunt Myrtle’s Diner.
Contains 4 spacious courtrooms. Judge’s chambers next to master courtroom has renovated powder room. Courtroom 2 would make a great playroom, easily accommodating a ping pong table and air hockey game. And the mahogany witness boxes will make a great place for your kids to play hide and seek.
Fully air controlled with multiple ceiling fans.
And you can throw your wrist watch away. Building has a Seth Thomas clock tower.
Historical property. Walk out to back yard where former pillories stood. One pillory still remaining. Perfect for that guest who comes to your barbecue and complains too much.
No need to worry anymore about where to lodge relatives you are not crazy about.
Basement fully finished, with 3 closed concept cells. Agent has the keys and the handcuffs.
Ideal for lawyers. Your chance to finally sit on the bench.
Includes all furnishings, appliances and gavels.
A must see. Won’t stay on the market too long. Showings by appointment only. Call Arthur King."
Maybe next time we get one of those emails from Spain, India or Nigeria saying one of our relatives we never heard of, died without a will and his $10 million estate is there for us for the taking, we should consider it seriously.
I’ll be watching my emails.