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Former Keokuk School Apparently Sold Online

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Jason Parrott
/
TSPR
Wells-Carey Elementary in Keokuk was apparently sold during an online auction Monday night.

Wells-Carey Elementary School was filled with Keokuk children for more than 80 years before closing its doors for good after the 2011-12 school year due to declining enrollment and the condition of the building. Now, it appears the former school will have its third owner in less than one year.

It took the Keokuk School District three years before it was able to find a buyer for the three-story brick building on Exchange Street. Gold Nugget Properties out of Missouri purchased it last summer for $11,001.

It appears to have been a short-term investment as the company placed the school on eBay on March 4. The auction ended Monday night with nearly 70 bids, the highest of which was $38,228.

The identity of the winning bidder is not known at this time, but will become apparent as the proper documents are filed with Lee County. It’s also unclear what the new owner plans to do with the building.

An advertisement connected to the online auction stated the company “had interest from major developers looking to develop this property into residential housing or senior housing and they are currently conducting their due diligence.”

The building was sold “as is, where is” with no reserve.

Tri States Public Radio called the two phone numbers listed on the advertisement.

A man answered the first number and said he could not talk, but his partner “Charles” might be able to at the other number. A man identifying himself as “Charles” answered the second number. He said Gold Nugget Properties was selling the school, but he declined to comment on why it was doing so.

Tim Hood, Keokuk School Superintendent, said he was aware of the online auction, but said the district had no connection to it because it no longer owns the building.

Jason Parrott is a former reporter at Tri States Public Radio.