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Waverley Mansion has potential buyer

 

Waverley Mansion, an 8,000 square-foot home in Clay County, is pictured in this 2012 Dispatch file photo. Natalie Morgan of Starkville Properties, the listing agent for the property, confirmed Monday there is a pending offer on the mansion. The identity of the buyer has not been disclosed.

Waverley Mansion, an 8,000 square-foot home in Clay County, is pictured in this 2012 Dispatch file photo. Natalie Morgan of Starkville Properties, the listing agent for the property, confirmed Monday there is a pending offer on the mansion. The identity of the buyer has not been disclosed. Photo by: Dispatch file photo

 

Natalie Morgan

Natalie Morgan

 

Dick Leike

Dick Leike

 

Melanie Snow

Melanie Snow

 

 

Slim Smith

 

 

Although details are few, it appears historic Waverley Mansion may soon have a new owner. 

 

Natalie Morgan of Starkville Properties, the listing agent for the property, confirmed Monday there is a pending offer on the 8,000 square-foot home located on 34 acres in eastern Clay County. 

 

"It went under contract (Sunday)," said Morgan, who took over the listing from Crye-Leike after that agency's one-year contract expired in August. "That's really all I can tell you until the sale closes." 

 

The identity of the buyer, where the buyer currently lives and the amount of the offer aren't being disclosed, but there had been a dramatic change in the listing price. 

 

When Crye-Leike owner Dick Leike listed the home in August 2017, the property was listed for $2.9 million. 

 

But the current listing offers the house at $1.2 million, although Morgan would not confirm if that was the price agreed upon by the prospective buyer. 

 

Leike said he was not surprised the listing price was reduced. 

 

"Really, that was something I had asked the Snow family (the owners) to do after the initial listing," Leike said. "When we first listed it, I told the family this was an internationally known house and there might be someone out there who saw this as their chance to buy an historic property," Leike said. "Later on, I recommended they drop the price, but they didn't want to do that. Now, it appears they've changed their minds." 

 

The home was purchased by Robert and Donna Snow in 1962. Melanie Snow, one of the Snows' four children, continues to live on the property, conducting daily tours of the house and grounds for visitors. 

 

"We did decide to lower the price," Melanie said. "We want to give someone an opportunity and an incentive to get the place. Our main concern all along was the continuation of Waverley." 

 

Waverley was once part of a 50,000-acre plantation. The home is not only on the National Register of Historic Places, it is also designated as a National Historic Landmark, one of just 40 in the state.  

 

Waverley was built in 1852 by Col. George Hampton Young and is known for its unique Greek Revival architecture. 

 

By the early 20th century, the property was embroiled in an estate dispute. It was vacant from 1913-1962, when the Snows bought it. From there, the Snows embarked on a room-by-room renovation, all while raising four children on the property. 

 

The Snows entertained often at their home with Donna serving as hostess until her death in 1991 at age 67.  

 

The family also opened the home for daily tours, and its reputation as one of the finest antebellum homes in the South soon began to grow. Robert Snow, who died in March 2017 at age 91, often could be found sitting on a bench in front of the home where he regaled visitors with his fantastic tales. 

 

Melanie Snow said her hope is that the new owners will continue to restore and maintain the home and keep it open for public tours. 

 

"You know, it's absolutely different here since my parents have gone," Melanie said. "But their spirits are still here in the gardens and the home, I can feel their presence. We're hoping someone will love it and continue working on it and appreciate it as much as we do."

 

Slim Smith is a columnist and feature writer for The Dispatch. His email address is ssmith@cdispatch.com.

 

 

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