January 8th, 2007


Rubel Castle


Rubel 'Pharm', Rubel Castle, or "Rubelia"
Glendora, California

I had long-since heard rumors of a so-called "satanic church" somewhere up in the hills of Glendora, California. Rumors ran from 'it' being a former convent turned coven house, to a full-fledged temple. Descriptions of a large clock tower with 'satanic symbols' on it, people disappearing, etc. pervaded the urban legend.

The sources were dubious as were the claims. Then one day, an acquaintance asked Me if I wanted to go see a 'castle' located somewhere in this suburban location, so what the Hell, I was game. Upon arriving curbside, seemingly overshadowed by thick foliage and draping trees, a 'tower' comprised completely of grey stones juts up beyond a very nice gate made of pointed barbs some way from the driveway. Climbing halfway up a tree reveals sharpened glass cemented into the wall, that anyone attempting to climb into this world would be rightfully skewered on its jagged points; also viewable from this vantage point were a couple of roofs therein, one with a stylized weather vane.

Turns out the 'satanic symbols' on the clock tower were actually metal figures of a cow at 3 o' clock, a pig at 6 o' clock, a rooster at 9 o' clock, and a horse at 12 o' clock. There is also a bell tower with a clock on it, but no 'satanic' symbols to be found. Ironically, Rubelia is far more de-facto Satanic that ever suspected.

So it actually did exist - a castle in the fetters of this unassuming city, so I was curious to learn more about its history and the owner.

Rubel Castle

Parents: Henry Scott Rubel and Dorothy Deuel Rubel

Upon investigation, I found that this estate was the brainchild of one Micheal Clarke Rubel, an eccentric gentleman who began its construction in the Noir Era, son to equally eccentric Henry Scott Rubel and Deuel Rubel, as the photo will attest. Lacking the enormous funds required to erect a castle from scratch, Mr. Rubel began to amass materials from every conceivable source possible, from river rocks collected from local mountains, to steel girders and bridges linking the towers together into which one can pass through, to donated lumber and many useful knickacks. With the help of "pharm hands" [sic], his dream began to manifest until its final form was created in what stands to this day.

Rubelia Nucleus, Mr. Michael Clarke Rubel.

Just recently, Mr. Rubel donated the property to the city's historical society, that it may be appreciated by those interested in such intriguing arcana, and is currently hosting tours. A local school was admitted within on June 5th {6/6/6 Eve} of this year, and more recently on Halloween, the gates were opened for trick or treaters wherein apples were dispensed by a man in a turn-of-the-19th century train conductor's uniform. An outfit not surprising, considering there is an actual caboose on site through which one may pass, a trapezoidal water tower framing the inner entrance, brick staircases, a draw bridge, as well as several etzels, a 'bottle house' {comprised of antique bottles cemented into the walls, upon whose surface sunlight creates an etherial glow inside the gloomy edifice}, and even a ramshackle 'knight'. Rubelia even has its own cemetery!

Various wooden rooms display its timeless nature, from a grammophone, hand-cranked printing presses, sepia-stained photographs, paintings, bookshelves filled with dust-worn literature, delightful 'old-world' furnishings, vintage clothing, and a round table room whose seats are actually comprised of tree trunks fastened with padded leather seats.

Rubelia even hosted its own international newsletter called "The Shriek", entirely handwritten by 'cleaning lady' Edith Friezner {said to be a witch}, which was then mailed off to someone on the list, who then remailed it to another recipient, until all 'subscribers' read it, until finally mailed back to Rubelia.

Ingenuity brought this castle to be, and remains a hidden wonder as a tribute to one man's fanciful obsession. ∞