Archiver > MS-JACKSON-PASCAGOULA > 2005-09 > 1126233038

Subject: Re: Historic Ocean Springs Home Gets Reprieve [ Al Capone ]
Date: Thu, 8 Sep 2005 22:30:38 EDT

Historic Ocean Springs home gets reprieve

Friday, August 12, 2005


OCEAN SPRINGS -- A dozen or so supporters watched as an ownership dispute
kept a historic home free from demolition for at least one more month.

The Ocean Springs Historic Preservation Commission unanimously tabled Bruce
W. Legate's request for the demolition of Del Castle, a family home near Davis

The home, located at 4010 Government St., is rumored to have connections to
Chicago mobster Al Capone, according to the report from the Community
Development and Planning department.

The 75-year-old home was surveyed by the state Department of Archives and
History and described as "one of the finest estates still intact in Jackson

The ownership dispute arose when Legate could provide no proof of power of
attorney. According to Legate's attorney, he was given power of attorney when
his parents were put in an assisted living facility.

His father, Brooks, has written two letters to the mayor asking for a denial
of the demolition request.

In one such letter the city received on April 15, the elder Legate wrote and
underlined: "We definite(ly) want to keep our house."

City Planner Donovan Scruggs suggested the board act on advice from the city
attorney to settle the matter in Jackson County Chancery Court.

Gary Bates, Legate's attorney, said the home has "deteriorated
significantly" and restoration of the home, estimated at $350,000, is "not economically

Commission member Dave Jensen visited the site and said he could not confirm
Legate's report of 14 inches of foundation settlement, especially since
there was no cracking in the stucco, and the window and door frames are still

A few of the audience members addressed the commission in support of the
home. Denise Smith lived in one of Del Castle's downstairs apartments for five
years and said she would turn it into a bed and breakfast if given the chance.

Commission member Sonya Cowart received applause after her address to the

"We are seeing the slow erosion of our history every time a building gets
torn down," she said. "That (history) is what separates Ocean Springs from any
other town. We've chosen as a community to preserve what we have."

The Historic Preservation Commission meets every second Tuesday at 7 p.m. in
the Board Room of City Hall located at 1018 Porter Ave.

Reporter Clair Byrd can be reached at (228)875-8144.

With warmth Regards,

Brenda Waltman Knippers

" The Douglas E. Knippers Family of Pascagoula ,Ms."

Ancestor Of Clarence Douglas Knippers

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