19th-century Jacksonville Theatre Guild Office set for auction

By Ryne Turke on July 22, 2016 at 2:11pm

A 19th-century building which has served as a home for numerous Jacksonville businesses and organizations will go to the highest bidder on Saturday.

The Queen Anne Style building at 210 West College Avenue, constructed in 1889 and currently listed as The Jacksonville Theatre Guild Office, is scheduled to be sold during an auction at 10 a.m.

In February, the Jacksonville Theatre Guild announced plans to close its doors after more than 30 years of business in the area.

Jacksonville Main Street Executive Director Judy Tighe says the location originally served as a doctor’s office.

“Doctor John Prince and L.A. Malone were in the building in 1890. In 1905 Doctor Caleb Cochran was there and in 1915 H.C. Woltman,” says Tighe.

By the 1925 the building transformed into Williamson Funeral Home. For nearly 75 years the funeral home conducted services at that location. Between 1997-1998, the building was sold to The Jacksonville Theatre Guild. The funeral home moved to 1405 Lincoln Avenue in 1998.

The location also served as a rooming house for performers at Jacksonville’s Opera House. Tighe says its ironic the building became the Jacksonville Theatre Guild Office years later.

Tighe notes the 210 West College building is a one-of-a-kind location for the city.

“It is amazing the number of people, for one reason or another, that have gone through the doors of the building. It isn’t only the rich history, but the gorgeous architecture.  It has been very well maintained. A lot of the original features are still remaining. It is an absolutely huge house. There are staircases that go up the third floor and even some reports of haunted activity,” says Tighe.

Tighe hopes the new owner will keep the building’s prestige and history intact as a tribute for the City of Jacksonville.