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Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Vampire Hunt Causes Collateral Damage

What makes the theft of Varnum Waite's headstone from a Rhode Island graveyard especially noteworthy is the possible motive.

Nestled behind the town's 256-year-old First Baptist Church, the cemetery has fallen victim to vampire enthusiasts and vandals ever since rumors circulated decades ago that the graveyard was believed to be the final resting place of the legendary Nellie Vaughn.

The rumor turned out to be a case of bloodsucking mistaken identity, but that hasn't thwarted thrill-seekers desperate to own a piece of American vampire folklore. Punks have been pilfering pieces of the graveyard under cover of night for years. [Link]
The cemetery actually is home to Nellie Vaughn, but she has been "legendary" only since 1967. It was in that year that a group of high school students wandered into the wrong cemetery looking for alleged vampire Mercy Brown and found instead Nellie's stone, which bore the ominous inscription, "I am waiting and watching for you." They, being idiots, took this as evidence that Nellie enjoyed the taste of human blood.

[Thanks for the tip, Carl!]

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