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The Martin Castle

UPDATE! Last night, May 10, shortly after 8pm, the Martin Castle was consumed by an extremely mysterious fire. According to today's Herald-Leader, local resident Pat Stilz said: "It was like a huge fireball. Honestly, it was like something from a huge movie set." The paper also reported that the Woodford County fire chief could not immediately determine the cause of the blaze. All photos we've seen show the empty stone castle completely engulfed in fire from one end to the other.

Miami attorney Thomas Post purchased the castle last year, after decades of it sitting abandoned. He had said he envisioned using the place for charitable events, and that later plans included making the place a bed-and-breakfast or a vineyard.

Rex Martin, the contractor who built it, died in August at age 72, ending a 35-year period of limbo for the castle, which has sat empty since Martin's breakup with his wife, for whom the castle was originally intended. Deeply depressed, he moved to Florida, unable to look at the castle anymore, leaving it to sit and rot. Although the property was listed as up for sale, Martin, who couldn't bear to part with it, was never really serious about selling it and blew off all inquiries about it from prospective buyers.

View a couple of new pics taken today, May 11, at the Castle here and here. It's hard from the road to discern how much damage has been done, but the peripheral walls seem mostly unharmed.

View old photos of the castle here, here, and here.