Harry and Meghan's new Santa Barbara mansion has a spooky history
EXCLUSIVE: Meghan and Harry’s new home sits behind a spooky estate once owned by the schizophrenic son of the inventor of the mechanical reaper who developed a foot fetish, carrying his slippers in his arms as if they were live pets
- Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s new $14,650,000 home lies in the upscale Montecito neighborhood of Santa Barbara
- DailyMail.com has learned that the home sits behind what used to be the estate of deeply troubled schizophrenic sex addict Stanley McCormick
- McCormick wrestled the clutches of schizophrenia and was confined to the second floor of his mansion on the estate for four decades until his death in 1947
- He suffered from a paralyzing sexual obsession, displayed bouts of violence and had an obsessive sexual foot fetish, carrying his slippers around like pets
- His wife Katherine inherited an estimated $40million (almost $500 million today) and focused her time on philanthropic endeavors
- The Sussexes’ home features nine bedrooms and 16 bathrooms along with a games room, gym, tennis courts and tea house
- The mansion, known as ‘The Chateau’, was built in 2003 and previously sold for $25million in 2009
It’s a dark and disturbing history sure to shock the delicate sensibilities of Prince Harry and his wife Meghan.
DailyMail.com has learned that the luxury $14.65million mansion the couple has bought which sits behind grand stone gates in an exclusive ‘pocket community’ known as Riven Rock in Montecito, California, used to be the sprawling estate of deeply troubled schizophrenic sex addict Stanley McCormick.
McCormick, who had inherited mountains of money from his father Cyrus, inventor of the mechanical reaper which revolutionized agriculture in the 19th Century, wrestled the clutches of schizophrenia and was confined to the second floor of his mansion on the 87-acre Riven Rock Estate for four decades.
McCormick suffered from a paralyzing sexual obsession, displayed bouts of violence and was considered such a threat to women that a team of all male doctors and nurses had to physically restrain him when his wife Katherine, his sisters or any other females were in the room.
DailyMail.com has learned that the home Harry and Meghan bought sits behind what used to be the sprawling estate of deeply troubled schizophrenic sex addict Stanley McCormick who died in 1947 (pictured)
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry bought a 14,563-sqft home for $14,650,000 on June 18 in the upscale Montecito neighborhood of Santa Barbara, California
According to T.C. Boyle’s novel Riven Rock in 1998, McCormick’s disturbing condition meant he was forced to sleep in a leather harness that kept his hands next to his ankles all night so he couldn’t touch his penis.
So disturbed and concerned by McCormick’s failing mental health, his family hired prominent behavioral scientist Dr. Gilbert Van Tassel Hamilton, who was allowed to set up a primate laboratory at Riven Rock in the hope of finding a miracle cure for Stanley’s problems.
The Sussexes have been living in the Montecito home for six weeks. They are pictured above with Archie in September last year
Dr Hamilton, later the author of Sex in Marriage and A Study of Sexual Tendencies in Monkeys and Baboons, worked for years with McCormick.
But his experiments on monkeys – a fact which will surely make the skin of animal lovers Harry and Meghan crawl – failed to produce any help for the multi-millionaire’s regular bouts of dementia and violence.
A series of other doctors and ‘experts’ were drafted in to help, with little success.
McCormick’s family, his wife Katherine in particular, went to extraordinary lengths to make Stanley comfortable.
The two-story Mission Revival-style mansion was transformed into a landscaper’s dream with exotic plants imported from Japan, a six-acre lemon orchard and handcrafted stone walls and bridges dotted the landscape.
McCormick was often seen wandering the grounds, shadowed by his nursing staff.
The family built a nine-hole golf course, built a theater for live performances and movies and hired a musical director.
They developed a large art collection to McCormick’s delight and the multi-millionaire was driven around in one of his Rolls-Royces to the family’s beach cottage at Sandyland, a coastal town south of Santa Barbara.
But tragically McCormick’s gradual mental deterioration, punctuated by periods of relative clarity, grew so bad even his wife was forbidden to see her husband and his elderly mother viewed her son from afar with binoculars.
Katherine couldn’t take watching her husband’s decline and spent much of her time in Boston where she became a feminist pioneer and trailblazer – a fact surely of interest to woke feminist the Duchess of Sussex.
Stanley’s wife Katherine couldn’t take watching her husband’s decline and spent much of her time in Boston where she became a feminist pioneer and trailblazer. The couple are pictured in 1904
The Sussexes’ home features nine bedrooms and 16 bathrooms along with a games room, gym, tennis courts and tea house
The home was built in 2003. The estate has sweeping lawns, tiered rose gardens, tall Italian cypress trees, blooming lavender, century old olive trees, a tennis court, tea house, children’s cottage and a pool
Harry and Meghan have moved into the star-studded neighborhood in California
She joined the woman suffrage movement – providing funds and organizing protests – eventually becoming vice president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association.
She later served as the first vice president of the League of Women Voters.
As the years wore on her husband’s behavior grew more and more bizarre, however.
McCormick developed an obsessive sexual foot fetish, carried his slippers around the mansion in his arms as they were live pets and had an unusual nightly ritual with his pajamas.
Many of his odd mannerisms were traced back to his childhood, such as putting hands in the toilet and drying himself until he chafed and an obsessive use of soap.
While Stanley was alive, his siblings Harry and Anita fought Katherine in court for more than a decade over their brother’s vast estate and his care. They lost.
McCormick died from pneumonia in 1947, leaving Katherine as his sole beneficiary.
She inherited an estimated $40million (almost $500 million today) and focused her time on philanthropy to reproductive health issues.
Years after Stanley’s death, research psychiatrists conclusively linked schizophrenia to a chemical imbalance, as the young Katherine had always insisted.
Katherine died age 92 in 1967. McCormick and his wife are buried at Graceland Cemetery in Chicago.
McCormick died from pneumonia in 1947, leaving Katherine as his sole beneficiary. She inherited an estimated $40million (almost $500 million today) and focused her time on philanthropy to reproductive health issues
Years after Stanley’s death, research psychiatrists conclusively linked schizophrenia to a chemical imbalance, as the young Katherine had always insisted
The Riven Rock Estate estate – the main house of which was razed by the 1925 Santa Barbara earthquake – was eventually sold off and divided up into land parcels, with many of its out buildings now serving as luxury homes.
Local realtors say property values in the area average around $5-6million.
Residents are mainly wealthy businessmen, financiers and well-heeled celebrities.
Sadly the grand oak tree near the main gate which had split and grown through a large boulder giving the McCormick Riven Rock Estate its name, died a number of years ago
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