In 1990 An Archaeologist Dug Up A Strange Skeleton – And Unraveled A Historic Vampire Panic

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Image: temizyurek/Getty Images

It’s 19th-century New England, and the region is in the grip of a worrying epidemic that is consuming entire families. Naturally, then, communities are desperate to put a stop to the widespread affliction. But the sinister illness continues to gradually suck the life from the bodies of its victims, leaving them as hollow, hacking shells – or even, in some cases, dead.

Image: Cristobal Rojas/Galería de Arte Nacional

And, tragically, in most cases, sufferers of this unpleasant affliction could only find respite in death, as there was simply nothing that doctors of the period could do to alleviate their anguish. Consequently, then, local communities inevitably took matters into their own hands. With medicine providing no solutions, they increasingly looked to the occult for the help that they so desperately sought.

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Image: temizyurek/Getty Images

Perhaps unsurprisingly, superstition eventually trumped rationality, and thus the New England vampire panic was born. With no scientific explanation behind the epidemic forthcoming, you see, it appeared to the people that something rather more sinister was at play. And according to folklore, the chief suspects accused of draining the life from the citizens’ loved ones were the undead.

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