Huguette Clark was the daughter of a copper tycoon. She had immense wealth, with an estate worth over $300 million, but her life was not richer for it. Instead of surrounding herself with beautiful things, Clark chose to spend the last 20 years of her life in a hospital room, despite the fact that she wasn’t sick. She allowed very few visitors and had no personal possessions except her clothes, her dolls, and her collection of violins (which, to be fair, did at one point include Stradivarius’s greatest masterpiece, known as “The Virgin”). She owned a number of homes, including a Fifth Avenue apartment in Manhattan and a mansion in California, but preferred the sterile environment of the hospital.
The cause of Clark’s reclusiveness is not known, but she once called money “a menace to happiness.”
After her death in 2011, Huguette Clark left over $30 million to her nurse, but this was challenged by distant relatives who hardly knew Huguette, and the nurse ultimately received nothing (but was able to keep most of the $31 million in gifts she’d received from Clark over the years.)[