Turkish foundation to turn legendary Muhammad Ali’s house into summer school, museum
The Turkish New York-based educational Turken Foundation has purchased the home of legendary American-Muslim boxer Muhammad Ali to turn the estate into an educational camp and build a museum in Ali’s honor.
In an event of Turken foundation in a New York hotel last September, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who met with Muhammad Ali’s daughters, had tasked the foundation to look after the 81-acre farm upon the daughters’ request, according to daily Hürriyet editor-in-chief Vahap Munyar.
About three months later, the foundation purchased the estate on Dec. 21, 2018 for around $2.2 million, Munyar said in a column on Feb. 18.
In his talks with the chairman of the foundation, Munyar found out that the plans surrounding the farm includes founding an educational camp and a “Muhammad Ali Museum.”
The estate, located on the St. Joseph River in southwest Michigan, is more than just a celebrity athlete’s house and has a history and a story.
With its Cape Cod-style, the 368-square-meter main house, including a wide living area, an extensive pantry, patio and three-car garage, the farm is in touch with nature while providing luxurious grand areas used for different purposes.
Built in the beginning of 1900, the estate had different owners, one of whom was the notorious gangster Al Capone’s lieutenant bodyguard Louis “Little New York” Campagna.
Rumor has it that after Campagna had purchased the estate in 1920s, the main hose was mysteriously burnt down. Then, the former barn house was converted into the main house.
After Campagna, the Seventh Day Adventist Church had converted property into an asylum in around 1955.
The renowned Ali and his wife had found the tranquility, security and solitude they were looking for in this house and purchased it in 1975, around an estimated price between $400,000 and 600,000$.
The estate’s official listing price was $2,895,037, referring to Ali’s 37 knockouts in his storied career, according to Forbes.
The one-of-a-kind property includes a circular drive, vegetable gardens, ponds, river on its three sides, which feeds into Lake Michigan, a main house, a carriage house, an original barn, car collector garages, a pool, a renovated gym and Ali’s personal office and boxing ring.
Another rumor spiraling around the farm is the belief that it has magical healing powers. Even Ali, after his arduous fights, secluded himself in his estate to recover.
The “Three Crown Gym,” which had cost Ali around $500,000 to build, was his indispensable training place, even though he was slowed down by his Parkinson’s in his later years.
A legend in boxing, Ali was also a Muslim activist who dedicated his life to fighting against racism and discrimination by using the platform he had to reach the masses.
He’d help local schools and buy underprivileged kids prom tickets. He was very active in the community and beloved by millions and billions people around the world. Many say that Ali is the greatest boxer ever.
The foundation which purchased the farm was established in 2014 in the U.S. by Turkey’s Ensar and TÜRGEV foundations, aiming to help eligible students in housing, scholarship, and many other areas.