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Muhammad Ali’s childhood home goes on the market

The childhood home where three-time world heavyweight boxing champion and activist Muhammad Ali learned to box and which stood along the route of his funeral procession in Louisville, Kentucky, is for sale.

On Tuesday, the one-story pink house, which for several years was a museum of sorts, focusing on Ali’s childhood and humanitarian activities, and two of his neighboring properties were put up for sale through Christie’s International Real Estate Bluegrass for $1.5 million, according to the company’s listing.

“Home of ‘The Greatest,'” the listing says, noting that the one-story ranch-style home at 3302 Grand Avenue in the city’s Parkland neighborhood has two bedrooms. The living area of ​​the three homes combined is 3,363 square feet.

Rusty Underwood, one of the listing agents, described the property as “a rare offering.”

“Muhammad Ali spent most of his childhood and adult life on the property,” he said Tuesday.

George Bochetto, a Philadelphia trial lawyer who said he owned the house with his late partner’s widow, bought it in 2016 for $60,000.

“It was abandoned for many years. It was in bad shape,” Mr. Bochetto said in an interview Tuesday. “I thought, ‘What a shame that this little house in west Louisville, as modest as it was, could produce a magnificent world figure. “

He added: “Muhammad Ali was one of my childhood heroes. »

Mr Bochetto said he wanted the new owners to “ensure the house is preserved” to honor it.

The sale would also include the contents of the house, he said.

“My goal now is to sell this property to either an institution or an individual or group of individuals who will be dedicated to the preservation and promotion of the property as a national historic site and monument,” a- he declared.

Built in 1920, the house has had different owners over the years. The Ali family sold it to Jared Weiss in 2012, who then formed a partnership with Mr. Bochetto, according to the Courier Journal of Louisville, which reported on the listing.

He also transformed the property into a museum, opening for tours days before the 2016 death of Ali, who had suffered from Parkinson’s disease for more than 30 years and died at age 74.

Mr Bochetto said the museum had closed its doors due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The exterior of the residence features a plaque honoring Ali, who was born Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr. on January 17, 1942 and lived there with his parents and brother. He also notes that Ali attended local public schools, which enrolled primarily black students.

Mr Bochetto said about $1 million was spent rehabilitating the house to replicate it as it was when Ali and his family lived there for 20 years. This included the home’s furniture, appliances and artwork, according to Mr. Bochetto.

Ali fans who want to learn more about his life and social activism can visit the nearby Muhammad Ali Center, also in Louisville, “which provides education and community engagement to continue Ali’s legacy and inspire the height”.

A spokeswoman for the museum, which receives about 100,000 visitors a year, said the center was not affiliated with Ali’s childhood home, which is for sale.

Mr Bochetto said he would be selective in choosing a buyer.

“I’m certainly not going to consider a sale for someone who wants to tear it down and build a house,” Mr. Bochetto said of potential new owners.

“Now, if they want to continue to make it a museum, everything is done for that,” he added. “It doesn’t necessarily have to remain a museum, although that would be nice. It should remain a preserved historical monument.

News Source : www.nytimes.com
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