Pig Iron Press building sold at sheriff’s sale
The downtown building at 26 N. Phelps St. that houses Pig Iron Press was sold at sheriff’s auction Tuesday for $90,000.
Mike Naffah of Naffah Development, a real estate development company based in Canfield, was the high bidder for the three-story 1910 building.
Naffah said that he has not settled on a specific use for the building, but said its development will be a joint venture with Dominic Marchionda, who is a downtown developer whose properties include the new Erie Terminal apartment building.
Naffah’s holdings include the Ironwood Drive properties in Canfield Township, including the Hampton Inn, a small shopping plaza that includes Inner Circle Pizza, the soon-to-open Whitefire Grill, and the Inn at Ironwood, a retirement community.
The previous owner of the building was Jim Villani, who owed $6,238 in back taxes to American Tax Funding of Jupiter, Fla., which bought the lien from Mahoning County. But he made a payment of $5,000 just before the sheriff sale, bringing his unpaid balance to $1,328.
Villani bought the 6,500-square-foot building 20 years ago. He used it as the base of operation for Pig Iron Press, an independent publishing company that he started 40 years ago. Pig Iron has published 125 books in that span.