posttrib
LABORIOUS 
Weather Updates

Sold! Bidders flock to auction at old Crown Point library

An auctisign is posted outside former Crown Point Community Library building Crown Point Ind. Friday April 19 2013.  |

An auction sign is posted outside the former Crown Point Community Library building in Crown Point, Ind. Friday April 19, 2013. | Stephanie Dowell~Post-Tribune

storyidforme: 47979671
tmspicid: 17799012
fileheaderid: 8015888

Updated: May 22, 2013 6:43AM



CROWN POINT — Everything from boulders to bookshelves at the old Crown Point Community Library found buyers at auction Saturday — all except the building itself.

About 50 people rummaged through history looking for deals and in some cases a simple memento of the city’s past during the opportunity to bid on fixtures, miscellaneous supplies and just about everything remaining both inside and outside the building at 214 S. Court St. that was left after the move last year to the new location at 122 N. Main St.

Longtime Crown Point residents Doug and Marsha Johnson came to the auction to observe. The couple own Antique Emporium on the downtown square and were interested in seeing some history.

They left with chairs, bookcases and the bamboo newspaper hangers libraries would use for their print publications.

“I didn’t know what they were at first. I just thought they looked cool,” she said. The couple plan to keep some of the unexpected treasures they found and sell some of the more historical library purchases in their shop.

Nikki Simmons of Chesterton said she dragged her husband, Bruce, with her to the auction because she enjoys old libraries and their memorabilia. She was hoping to find an old card catalog and instead ended up with CD racks, bookshelves, rolling carts and a variety of other interesting finds.

“I would love to have one of those. I love libraries and books,” she said. As Nikki was following the auction through the building to see what else might come up, Bruce was lugging his unexpected purchase — 12 landscaping boulders from the library courtyard purchased for $40 — out to the truck.

“He doesn’t usually like auctions but he saw those and made me bid on them,” she said.

Some of the more unique items available for auction also found buyers, including the exterior library sign and the wall sculpture of Crown Point native and space shuttle astronaut Jerry Ross floating in space.

Renee Doughman of Valparaiso was the winning bidder in one of the more heated auction exchanges. She snagged the large-scale shuttle model and the plaque in two separate transactions for about $1,200. Doughman was keeping plans for use of the shuttle model a secret for now.

“Not until January,” she said.

The lighthouse and dragon, giant parts of a play area for children, were also popular items selling for $800 to Kathy and Dave Hachlica, who own the Lazy K Corral horse ranch in Valparaiso. The couple were pitted in the bidding against Don Towner of Tulsa, Okla. Towner was at the auction to watch Kraft Auction Services in action. He is a building liquidator and plans to use the company to liquidate the former Bakker Produce in Griffith.

While the Hachlicas planned to use their purchase to draw attention to their ranch and for photos with students, they ultimately decided to let Towner buy the lighthouse from them for the auction price: “He wanted it for a diabetes camp,” Kathy Hachlica said.

Towner said the foundation he started to honor his late wife and her work with children, the Sylvia Towner Diabetes Camp Foundation, takes youngsters with diabetes on three camps a year.

As for the building, bidding began at $800,000 and was quickly lowered to $100,000 as buyers failed to materialize. Lynn Frank, library executive director, said while the building did not sell at auction there was a little interest from buyers there Saturday and they will be submitting proposals for the library board to consider Tuesday.

“Overall, it’s gone well today. It’s kind of bittersweet,” Frank said.



© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit www.suntimesreprints.com. To order a reprint of this article, click here.