Angel of Hope. Detail
Montandon was the hostess with the mostest until she was cursed at
1000 Lombard Street home, right before
the eyes of San Francisco society and visitors including Ted Kennedy. She
wrote about it in The Intruders. Published
in 1975, the book is former TV hostess Montandon's account of a hex violently
levied at this Lombard Street apartment house at the foot of the crookedest
street by a tarot card reader "quivering with rage" because Montandon
neglected to serve him a drink at one of her celebrated parties. What follows,
its publishers said, was "a terrifying confrontation with the supernatural."
Certain facts are known. At least three deaths, including a suicide, occurred
at the house in the late 1960s. Also among the dead was Montandon's secretary
Mary Louise Ward, who died in a fire here under unusual circumstances.
Montandon also attributed a string of personal setbacks to the curse. Allegedly
the house was given a clean bill of health following an exorcism. Montandon
moved out anyway. She continued to be a true San Francisco celebrity who:
sued TV Guide over a typo that referred to her as a call girl, was very
briefly married to
conducted round table rap sessions at her society luncheons, presided over
house blessings, wrote a column for the Examiner, and published books.
In stark contrast to her 1000 Lombard residence, Montandon dubbed her later
home at 1591 Shrader Street "The Enchanted
Cottage." When a Monterey Cypress at the end of the driveway of The
Enchanted Cottage had to come down after a 1997 windstorm, Montandon commissioned
sculptor Jack Mealy to carve a huge angel into its trunk. The statue was
named "Angel of Hope" by Montandon, who has since sold The Enchanted Cottage
and published a book, "Celebrities and their Angels." Pat is the inspiration
for the character Prue Giroux, aka Pam Fontainbleu, in Armistead Maupin's
of the City.