Kleinman Home Closes; Chicken Palace Auction Puts Pittsburg, TX on the Sales Map

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Dallas City Councilman Lee Kleinman finally sold his Hillcrest Estates home Oct. 28, after two agents and almost three years of marketing and just hours before Elite Auctions was set to auction the home with no reserve.

As so often happens with auctions, a buyer came forward at the last minute and signed on the dotted line.

“Everyone is very happy,” says Elite Auctions Marketing Director Alicia Chmielewski. “This was a pre-auction offer, which means the auction actually never took place. When we take on a property to sell, we won’t take it unless we feel we can get a reasonable price for the sellers.”

And they did. The final sales price was … … $3 million. The Kleinmans are now moving to Lake Forest.

The Kleinman house had been listed for $4,567,890 back in 2018. Hmm wonder how they came up with that sequential number?

Cluckingham Palace

Named “Cluckingham Palace” by the locals, this 43-acre property is loaded with a huge house, natatorium, spa, media room, six bedrooms, multiple baths, a pond, and park-like grounds outside. But the Pilgrim’s Pride family mansion was no picnic to sell, as I wrote for Forbes.

Talk about a hard sell: 18,000 stunning square feet designed by Richard Drummond Davis in Pittsburg, Texas, about 120 miles east of Dallas. Concierge Auctions had delayed closing twice, but a buyer emerged yesterday. Concierge, Kyle Crews and Sanders Avrea with Allie Beth Allman & Associates, and the Pilgrims’ own grandson, a real estate broker in East Texas, jointly marketed the property.

As usual, the NDA’s are flying.

“The auction closed Monday night around 4:30 p.m. and we got a couple bidders. The estate is under contract and should close in 30 days,” says Clayton Pilgrim of Century 21 Farm and Ranch Harvey Properties and grandson of Bo and Patty Pilgrim, the billionaire couple who built the estate.

Bo Pilgrim died in 2017; his wife and high school sweetheart passed soon after in 2018. The family’s chicken business, Pilgrim’s Pride, grew to one of the largest in the country through vertical integration. At one time, the company had operations in 17 states with more than 35,000 employees. But this large operation’s roots stayed small in its hometown of Pittsburg with only 4,000 residents.

“The family is very excited to see the estate move forward into exciting new ownership,” says Clayton.

Pilgrim cannot say what the sales price is, but the reserve (about $3 million) was hit.

I can tell you the estate was purchased by an individual. And there were five bidders total: two were local, three were out of state. As soon as we know, we will share.

The estate was valued at $8 million, so someone got a terrific value in a beautiful little town, They did not, however, get the King Air 350 we travelled in, Patty-Pilgrim style, to scope the estate. Stay tuned for more on that!

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Candy Evans

A real estate muckraker, Candy Evans is one of the nation’s leading real estate reporters. She is also the North Texas real estate editor for Forbes.com, CultureMap Dallas, Modern Luxury Dallas, & the Katy Trail Weekly. Candy has written for Joel Kotkin’s The New Geography, Inman Real Estate News, plus a host of national sites. Constantly breaking celebrity real estate news, she scooped former president George W. Bush's Dallas home in 2008. She is the founder and publisher of her signature CandysDirt.com, and SecondShelters.com, devoted to the vacation home market. Her verticals have won many awards, including Best Blog by the venerable National Association of Real Estate Editors, one of the nation’s oldest and most prestigious journalism associations. Candy holds an active Texas real estate license but does not sell. She is on the Board of Directors of Braemar Hotels & Resorts (BHR).

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  1. mary says

    Around 21-22 yrs ago the Dallas Observer did a piece on Pilgrim’s Pride in Pittsburg. In short, the chicken bits were thrown into a river, clogged up the river, grossed the nearby landowners out who approached the company and asked them to find another way to get rid of chicken bits. At the time Pilgrim’s Pride didn’t care about what their neighbors thought and did nothing to rectify the situation. Not that it matters to their bottom line (and regardless of what they have done since then) but I can’t bring myself to buy their chicken once I learned of their indifference.

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