The Commercial Appeal

Sale of Lewis’ home moving ahead after dispute

- Bob Mehr

The sale of the Desoto County home of late music legend Jerry Lee Lewis is moving ahead.

The 30-acre Nesbit ranch — which includes a 4,500-square-foot main house with six bedrooms, a stocked lake, two ponds, outbuildin­gs, a selfcontai­ned apartment and a swimming pool — was purchased by Lewis in the early 1970s.

The property at 1595 Malone Road was later put in a trust, under the name of Lewis’ longtime friend and road manager Cecil Harrison. The move was designed to protect the property from forfeiture, as Lewis battled the IRS over debts owed the government from the 1970s to the 1990s.

Though the property remained in Harrison’s name, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Lewis lived at the ranch at various points over the years until his passing in October 2022. Most recently it had been occupied by his son, Jerry

Lee Lewis III.

In December, the ownership of the ranch became the subject of a dispute between Lewis III and the listed owners, the heirs of Harrison, who died in 2013, and the heirs of a law firm, Barnes, Jones, & Warren, with whom Harrison had settled a claim in exchange for a one-third stake in the property.

The Lewis ranch property was first put up for sale in January, with a website showcasing the house and pitching it as a “developmen­t opportunit­y or as a fan’s dream home.”

Lewis III publicly came out against the sale, saying: “Any friend or family member of Jerry Lee’s knew it was his wish that it remain in the Lewis family and not be sold off.” But in February, a Mississipp­i court ruled Lewis III was required to vacate the property by March 5.

On Monday, Lewis III, released a statement, in which he confirmed he had “handed over the keys to our family home.”

“The place where I grew up is no longer our home and our Dad’s legacy,” he said in the statement. “It’s now a property that will unfortunat­ely be sold off without our input or decisions and contrary to my understand­ing of my father’s wishes.”

The Harrison family had previously posted a statement of its own on the house sale website which noted that, “The ownership of this property was never in question. When public documents concerning this property are examined together, they confirm the property is owned by the heirs of Harrison, Barnes, Jones, & Warren. There are no legal barriers to the sale of this property; therefore, we are proceeding.”

The Lewis ranch does yet have an official price tag. But Zillow estimates the property is currently worth just over $756,000.

Lewis III added he is moving on from the dispute.

“There’s so much to continue to do for my Dad’s legacy that we are leaving this in the past and focusing on the future. Many great things to come.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from United States