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Henry Clay

Lost L.A.: Huntington's private tribute to wife Arabella

Lost L.A.: Huntington's private tribute to wife Arabella

Power, money and love fuel extravaganzas. Railroad millionaire Henry E. Huntington had all three and used them in the closing decade of his life to build his eponymous San Marino library and gardens. You know the mansion, the cactus and the Japanese tea house. What you may not know is that Huntington's estate once had a gallery dedicated to his wife, Arabella.

Known as Belle, she probably was born in Alabama, and through brains and charm she became the mistress of Collis P. Huntington, financier demon of the Central Pacific Railroad. When his wife died, Collis married Arabella and together they led a glittering life of private rail cars and big houses, including one at 57th Street...

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