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Owosso – A Michigan college is selling five homes that were donated by a philanthropist who was a successful maker of electric motors.

Baker College of Owosso is selling a block of houses through an online auction on Jan. 8. The houses were formerly owned by George Hoddy, an Owosso businessman who co-founded Universal Electric. He died in 2010.

The houses on West Williams Street include a mansion where Hoddy lived. Baker College tells The Argus-Press that the Hoddy block has “historic value” to Owosso, but it believes a sale is in the best interest of the school.

A house known as the Lyon-Seegmiller house has been vacant for approximately 40 years. A plan to demolish it in 2015 was dropped after public criticism.

The homes will be open for prospective bidders on Dec. 17 and Jan. 7.

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