[Photo courtesy SH Express]
This embattled house on Union Street in Sag Harbor, known to locals at the Morpurgo House, may now hit the auction block for the second time in two years. Originally sold at auction for $1.4 million following a lengthy dispute over ownership between sisters Annselm and Helga Morpurgo, the home's new owners are facing foreclosure and lawsuits from their lenders. In what could only be described as a modern-day Grey Gardens, the Morpurgo sisters fought for years over who had legal rights to a house so dilapidated that lawyers for the property claimed it didn't even have plumbing. Helga peaceably moved to East Hampton years ago, but Annselm, who perfers to go by the name "Artemis Smith", would not leave the property until she was legally wrangled off of it. If this making of an new HBO documentary wasn't intriguing enough, the new owners and every lawyer involved are now being investigated in a multi-million dollar mortgage fraud scheme. As for the Morpurgos, Artemis, née Annselm, is continuing to pursue a civil rights case against her sister, a case previously dismissed, but recently granted a new trial by none other than Supreme Court Justice nominee Sonia Sotomayor.
· Morpurgo House May Be Back on the Block [SH Express]
· Trying Again to Auction a House in Sag Harbor [Dans Papers]