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Also known as the Newhall Mansion or Cook Mansion, the Piru Mansion was built in 1886 and is Ventura County Historical Landmark #4. It was built by Piru's founder, David C. Cook, a wealthy publisher of Sunday School tracts and supplies from Illinois, who had wanted to establish a "Second Garden of Eden," specifying, tradition says, the planting of Biblical apricots, dates, figs, grapes, olives, and pomegranates. Cook's house became known as the Piru Mansion because of Sunkist's "Mansion Brand" valencia oranges, which can still be found in the area. The mansion originally utilized natural gas as it possessed no electricity or running water.
In 1968, the Mansion was purchased by the Newhall family. Scott Newhall began restoring it after the earthquake of 1971, during which the two chimneys were knocked down. In February 1981, a spark from a painter's blow torch ignited the house while it was being painted and burnt it to the ground. The owners, seeking to reconstruct their home, utilized old photographs and the assistance of people who had restored the house during its lifetime. The new mansion was completed in December 1983.
In 1994, the Northridge earthquake also knocked down two chimneys. In 2003, the Newhalls sold the Piru Mansion to David Newhall Hill, a relative of the Newhall family. In 2012, the Mansion was sold to a private investment group and converted into an event venue for weddings, corporate retreats and other occasions as well as a private vacation rental for overnight accommodations.
Film and television
The Piru Mansion has been shown in numerous films, as well as television and commercials. Some of the films and television series the Mansion has been used in are: Don't Be Afraid of the Dark (1973 film), The X-Files, Charmed, Melrose Place, Murder She Wrote, Charlie's Angels, The Incredible Hulk, Payne American Wedding and Hart to Hart, among many others. Piru Mansion was used as the home of Ellis Wyatt in Atlas Shrugged: Part I, the first segment in a three-part movie adaptation of the novel by Ayn Rand. Most recently, Piru Mansion was used as the set for Escape the Night, presented by YouTube Red.
Some of the noteworthy personalities who have acted in productions shot at the Piru Mansion include: Shelley Winters, June Allyson, Buddy Ebsen, Ricardo Montalban, Robert Duvall, Patty Duke, James Garner, Angela Lansbury, Shirley Jones, John Larroquette, David Duchovny, Shannon Doherty, Alyssa Milano, Joey Graceffa, Shane Dawson, Eva Gutowski, GloZell Green, Lele Pons and many more.[not in citation given]
- "Ventura's Stroll Through History". About Ventura. Ventura. Ventura Visitors and Convention Bureau. 2003. Archived from the original on March 10, 2003. Retrieved October 11, 2015.
- Newhall, Ruth Waldo (September 1997). "Through Fire and Quake, Piru Mansion Has Proven Itself a Survivor". Old Town Newhall Gazette. Retrieved October 11, 2015.
- "Newhall Mansion". Newhall Mansion. Retrieved October 11, 2015.
- Lindsay (May 2, 2011). "The Newhall Mansion from Charmed". Iamnotastalker.com. Retrieved October 11, 2015.
- "Filming Location". Newhall Mansion. Retrieved October 11, 2015.
- Ryon, Ruth (August 19, 2001). "Piru Mansion Has Ties to Hollywood". Home of the Week. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 11, 2015.