The Historic Russ House in Marianna is officially off the market. The landmark was initially put up for sale to the public with a price tag $550,000. Within the last year months the price has decreased and the public has voiced their concerns to keep the house public. Both Jackson County and the City of Marianna are officially able to claim the Russ House and Brown House in an agreement that was months in the making.
The Russ House is centrally located off busy Layette Street in the City of Marianna. The building was built in 1895 by Joseph W. Russ. Today it's known as the Russ House and according to President of the Jackson County Chamber of Commerce, Jeff Massey, it plays a significant role in Jackson County, "People just don't realize the draw, the people we get in here every day from all over the United States. They love the house, like the people, the area and that's our chance to sell Jackson County"
But according to Jackson County Tourism Development Council Director, Pam Fuqua, the current for sale sign on the property isn't helping, "It is such an eyesore. We are so ready to get it down." Within the next week it will come down. After months of negotiations the Brown House and the Russ House are off the market $165,000. The buyers are Jackson County and the City of Marianna. According to Marianna City Manager, Jim Dean, the deal splits funds and responsibilities, "The city would front the funds to actually acquire the property. And then the county will put up a matching amount of funds to make improvements to the Russ House."
The Tourism Development Council and Jackson County Chamber of Commerce will stay in the Russ House and lease their offices. As for the Brown house next door, the Jackson County Development Council will be moving in. According to City Manager Jim Dean, the deal will be finalized in the next few weeks, "This is a great example of what you can get done when you all work together for the common good."
Chamber of Commerce President, Jeff Massey, is proud of the work that made the Russ House and Brown House negotiations possible, "I don't know many places you can go today and see a city, a county, a chamber and a tourist development council all pull together to work for the common cause."