Before Atticus Finch of “To Kill a Mockingbird” became a household name, there was a small law firm office that inspired Harper Lee’s novel. Lee’s father worked at this law firm, which was within an old bank building in her hometown, and the 6000 square foot space is up now for sale for $125,000.
The building has long been vacant, but was a pivotal structure within the novel, and in Lee’s newly release novel, “Go Set a Watchman”.
The old, brick building located in the town square of Monroeville, Alabama once housed the law office of A.C. Lee. He served on the Alabama Legislature, and was, at first, hesitant when it came to embracing integration of African Americans in his hometown. However, A.C. Lee did become a civil rights supporter before his death in 1962. A.C. Lee’s law firm had moved to the second floor of the brick building in 1928 after a fire had destroyed the previous location. The law firm stayed there until it moved into a newer building in 1972.
Harper Lee spent much of her childhood in this old building, and is an important structure in both of her novels. In reality, the old banking building has been vacant for at least a decade, and has been on and off the market for years. In addition, it needs a little bit of work. There are problems with the roof, which has caused leaking. This in part has created water damage on the historic floors.
In light, the city is working on preserving this building and preventing more damage from happening. So far, a few potential buyers have looked at the space over the past few weeks. They hope to keep this historic building around for many years to come. “To Kill a Mockingbird” was such an inspirational novel for many people, lawyers and non-lawyers alike; it would be grand if it’s new owner would fix up the place and keep it around for future generations to see.