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The old saying goes, “it takes all kinds to make a world.” That is truly the case for 104-year-old Huguette Clark.
She was born in 1906 to Montana copper tycoon William Clark. He won notoriety by purchasing a temporary seat on the senate in 1899. He moved the family to New York when he left the senate, and built a 121-room mansion on Fifth Ave. Huguette remained there until her father’s death in 1925. Soon after, at age 22 she married William Gower, the son of one of her father’s business associates. They divorced in 1930. Gower claimed that the marriage was never consummated. Nevertheless, she lived out her days as Mrs. Huguette Clark. Freudians, start your engines.
She moved further along Fifth Ave to live with her mother, and so began her life of solitude with the exception of her mother, of course and a few friends. There are no known photographs of her during this time, save for one that was taken in 1930 shortly after her divorce.
What she did in her free time is certainly perplexing. She had incurred a vast doll collection since her childhood, and she maintained that habit well throughout her life. Apparently, her housemaids even ironed the doll’s dresses. In her “free time” she ate sardines and watched “The Flintstones.”
Her mother died in 1963 and she continued onward with her enigmatic lifestyle. However, about twenty years ago, she decided to check herself into the hospital without medical reason. During this time, she burgeoned into philanthropist and donated large sums of money to her nurse and several charitable organizations. And in the hospital still, she maintained her solitude until her death last week.
Her life was kept relatively secret and her dream was to slip anonymously through the cracks of time. And yet, she certainly follows the trend and lure of posthumous fame. Still, nobody will ever know the reasoning behind her odd habits or her choice of solitude. That’s the way it is