KEYSER - The Alkire Mansion will be auctioned off to the highest bidder on Oct. 8, and the sale will not include Mill Meadow Park or Red Kitzmiller Field.

By Liz Beavers
lbeavers@newstribune.info
Tribune Managing Editor
KEYSER - The Alkire Mansion will be auctioned off to the highest bidder on Oct. 8, and the sale will not include Mill Meadow Park or Red Kitzmiller Field.
Public notice of the sale of the pre-Civil War mansion and the ground on which it sits will appear in the News Tribune this weekend in the form of a legal advertisement.
The sale of the mansion and whether the deal would include Mill Meadow Park has been the topic of debate for some months, with the mayor and council saying not only is the mansion costing the city to maintain, but the city also does not currently have the funds to finish renovating it into something useful for the community.
The previous administration, under mayor Ed Miller and city administrator Randy Amtower, had given the Mineral County Historical Society $18,600 to begin renovations on the building, and once that work was begun, several organizations and individuals donated additional monies to the foundation with the goal of the building eventually being made available for use by the community for meetings and events.
When the current administration began talking about selling the building in May, however, the individual donations stopped, as did the renovation work.
On Aug. 14, the council voted to put the building and the adjacent portion of Mill Meadow Park up for auction, which sparked two responses from the community - resident Melanie Minshall launched a petition drive to keep the park open to the public, and the Historic Foundation asked to have the organizations and individuals reimbursed for the money they donated toward renovations.
While the latter is still being debated by the city officials, the former concern has been put to rest by the terms of the sale.
According to the legal notice, the sale will include only Alkire Mansion and 0.61 of an acre.
Further terms of the sale stipulate that the starting bid will be at least $25,000, and the buyer will be responsible for all costs associated with the auction, including closing costs.
In addition, it is stipulated that the buyer will “agree to maintain the original facade and agree to not demolish the property,” because the mansion “is an important structure to the history of the City of Keyser and Mineral County.”
The auction is set for Tuesday, Oct. 8, at 10 a.m. at the mansion.