Anthony Fairhaven was the president and CEO of the Moegen-Fairhaven group. He was a prominent New York real estate developer who was engaged in the construction of a new residential apartment tower at Catherine Street in lower Manhattan during the events of The Cabinet of Curiosities.
Fairhaven was also secretly "the Surgeon", a serial killer who mutilated his victims and removed the cauda equina portion of the spinal cord. He was attempting to recreate the experiments of Enoch Leng, a 19th-century scientist who murdered more than 40 people and created a formula to successfully extend his life span to over one hundred and fifty years.
Appearance and Mannerisms
Fairhaven was approximately 35 years old. He was lean, with a muscular build and wavy black hair.
He had an apartment in the Metropolitan Tower and offices in the his company's headquarters, the Moegen-Fairhaven building. His employees considered him an excellent boss and noted that he "care[d] about the little folk". He notably never worked Sundays, preferring to attend church.
Journalist Bill Smithback interviewed several of Fairhaven's former teachers and found that they remembered him fondly. He had been a top student and head of the swim team. One of his teachers noted that he never drank or smoked, and even abstained from coffee. As an adult he continued to be obsessed with his health, breakfasting on plain crackers, royal jelly, and tea.
Fairhaven was a major force in New York politics. He donated large amounts of money to the mayor's re-election campaign and held sway with the New York Police Department and the New York Museum of Natural History. Therefore, he had only to pick up the phone to bring enormous amounts of pressure to bear on anyone attempting to interfere with him or his projects.
Fairhaven was also involved in charity. He founded the Little Arthur Clinic for Children, a research hospital that specialized in rare childhood diseases. The clinic was named for Fairhaven's brother Arthur, who died young after contracting progeria, a disease that caused him to age prematurely.
Arthur's ordeal deeply impacted Fairhaven, who attempted to become a medical doctor in an attempt to extend his own life. Fairhaven was expelled from medical school for conducting unethical experiments, later joining his father's real estate business.
He turned to religion as a way to overcome his fear of death, but later returned to medicine and science. Fairhaven began to donate heavily to research institutions including the New York Museum. His benefactor status gave him privileged access to the museum's collections and he became aware of Enoch Leng and his life-extending experiments.
Fairhaven put his resources to bear to find out more about the scientists and somehow discovered the location of Leng's house on Riverside Drive. There he discovered the man himself, still alive after more than 150 years, and he tried everything including torture to make Leng reveal his secret formula, which he called his "arcanum". By Fairhaven's own admission, he pushed Leng too hard and caused his death. He then purchased the location of Leng's first lab, the old J.C. Shottum's Cabinet of Curiosities, and eventually found Leng's notebook.
By using the notebook and examining the bodies removed from the tunnel underneath the Cabinet, Fairhaven learned the nature of Leng's experiments. He began dressing as Leng and stalking people, starting with tourists who wandered into lonely areas of Central Park. He would make an incision in his victims' lower back and remove the cauda equina, a portion of the spinal cord that contained chemicals needed for Leng's serum. Fairhaven also began to attack anyone who could connect him to Leng, the Museum, or the Cabinet of Curiosities. The police dubbed him "the Surgeon".
Fairhaven had little success with the formula before Special Agent Pendergast tracked him to Leng's home. He also failed to understand the true nature of Leng's work; the life-extension serum was a means to an end, as Leng knew he would need several lifetimes to achieve his real goal: to bring about the end of humanity. He experimented with toxins from a variety of plant and animal sources, leaving behind a laboratory full of deadly things. Pendergast lured Fairhaven into Leng's final lab and, as Fairhaven searched for something to kill the FBI agent, he touched several objects coated in lethal contact poisons. He spent his last moments in intense agony as his nervous system and vital organs shut down.
Pendergast chose not to involve the authorities, not wanting to reveal the secrets of Leng's research to the world. He searched the house from top to bottom until he discovered Leng's arcanum. He bricked Fairhaven's body up behind a basement wall so it would never be found. The Surgeon murders were officially unsolved.
Shortly after Fairhaven's disappearance, the IRS raided Moegen-Fairhaven and everyone assumed that Fairhaven had fled the country to avoid being arrested. He was rumored to have been spotted on some Caribbean island, drinking daquiris and reading the Wall Street Journal.