Building and items at Brown Transfer & Storage in St. Joseph, Mo., will be auctioned Oct. 25 The brick and concrete, 180,000-square-foot building that has housed Brown’s Transfer & Storage Asset & Unclaimed Freight in St. Jopeph, Mo., for over 100 years will be sold at auction October 25th.
News-Antique.com - Sep 28,2012 - (ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) – The brick and concrete, 180,000-square-foot building that has housed Brown’s Transfer & Storage Asset & Unclaimed Freight for over 100 years will be sold in an Internet and catalog auction on Thursday, Oct. 25, by Mayo Auction & Realty, at 1 p.m. (CST). The property is situated on approximately two acres at 920 South 6th Street in St. Joseph.
Offered will be the building and land, along with some of the building’s contents, which will be a potential gold mine for treasure hunters. It might not be something out of an episode of Storage Wars, but bidders can expect a variety of unique and interesting items. Many will be left behind by the merchandise's owners, who didn't step forward to claim them for whatever reason.
Just a few items that historians and collectors may find interesting include a large group of leather-bound pay ledgers or journals, documenting some of the company’s personnel and pay records from decades past; river bricks, or cobblestones, laid down for an alleyway adjacent to the building that may be valuable as architectural antiques; and many bricks in the main structure that date back to when the oldest part of the building was first built. These may also carry value.
There are also several large original and stately portrait paintings, showing the company's founders, dating back more than a century. A more specific list of items might be viewed on the Mayo Auction & Realty website as auction day nears, at www.AuctionByMayo.com. On the more utilitarian side, fixtures and equipment will include trucks, trailers, forklifts and shelving.
The three-story structure was built in 1906, specifically for Brown’s, which actually began as a cartage company in 1867, after the end of the Civil War. The firm operated in other facilities leading up to the construction of the present-day structure, where it has been housed ever since. Other ancillary buildings were built and eventually torn down over the many decades.
Features of the facility include three freight elevators (all fully operational), six loading bays, a basement level (the elevators stop at all three floors, plus the basement), a recent roof and a great location, with direct frontage on South 6th Street and access to Interstate 29, four blocks from the Edmond Street exit. A new owner could continue to operate it as a storage facility.
But the property is zoned for mixed use, so it’s also conceivable the building could be converted into any one of a number of purposes. Because of the bays and elevators, it could be attractive to an industrial or manufacturing company. Regardless of the final outcome, it will close the final chapter on a company that has been a St. Joseph fixture for more than a century.
Not many companies operate continuously under the same name for nearly 150 years, but that has been the case with Brown’s. It’s only had two owners; the current owner bought it from the family of the original owners in the 1970s. Prior