What is it about Vampires?!

54ffcee5dc1b04f72f678a7205920a2cI’ve heard that question a time or two!  Most recently it was asked of me while speaking at a public library in Tangipahoa Parish, Louisiana.  The funny thing is, I never grow tired of offering an opinion on the subject!

Having been dubbed with the title of “Vampire Historian,”  these three questions are encountered frequently:  “What is it about Vampires?”  “Do I believe in Vampires?” and “Which is the authentic Vampire origination theory?”

All three of the above topics just happen to be my favorite to discuss, and well, just don’t get me started if you have somewhere to go!

Vampire legend and lore is most intriguing research.  Every region, religion and era defines their own brand of the immortal.  Most legends are common in traits and characteristics.  Surprisingly, many legends are referenced or are similar to, creatures described within ancient text based within that same specific regions and time period.  This recurring phenomenon compels one to believe the old saying, “Every legend, no matter how obscure, is based on some level of truth.”

So, “What is it about Vampires?”  and “What is the most authentic of origination theories?” can be answered somewhat simultaneously.  In my opinion, Vampire’s represent the most forbidden form of taboo.  Most of us were raised and exist within a religious environment of some form.  Considered one of the most blasphemous of sins is to deny God.  Though the Vampire’s characteristics are “God-like” in a sense, they were cursed with their existence for having committed this most offensive of sins; they turned their backs on the creator.  No matter the legend, the cause, is most generally the same.  Ancient religious text in association with the earliest recorded history of the Vampire collaborate on many levels. (The word Vampire was introduced in the early 1600th century but did not become common until the 1800th century.)

The earliest recorded legends are in association with Lilith, first wife of Adam.  Following Lilith came Cain, son of Adam who spilled the first human blood by murdering his brother Abel.  Another theory that is in association with the King James Bible and other religious text is that of Judas, who betrayed Christ, resulting in his crucifixion.

These are all well know stories from within the King James Bible.  There is also something else that is occurring during this same era.  Broad references are made to the Fallen angels in the aforementioned Bible yet in other ancient texts, namely the book of Enoch, these references are expanded upon in great detail.

Genesis 6:1-2 states: “When humans began to increase in number and daughters were born to them The sons of God saw the daughters of men, that they were fair and they took them wives of all they chose.”

This is, in my opinion, is the point when Vampire race was originated.  God had enforced but one demand onto the Heavenly Hosts; they were not to interfere with mankind.  With this one lustful act, the Sons of God became cursed and were cast from the Heavens.  No longer existing within the grace of their maker, The Fallen turned on mankind, determined to corrupt the race in retribution.  Mankind had been deemed the chosen race by the same God who had created all angels within His image.

The integration of The Fallen into the human population initiated a hybrid bred race.  Having the physical attributes of a mortal, they were like no man that had existed.  These creatures would inherit the same characteristics of their maker.  Consider the fact that angels were created by God in his own image.  The Fallen were in fact, immortal, all knowing beings who possessed abilities incapable of any man.  These characteristics mimic those associated with Vampire race.  Most legends define Vampire as an all knowing, powerful being with the curse of immortality, and most legends have similarities in their weakness.  These weaknesses are reflective of having committed the unforgivable sin, denying their maker.

Legends concur that Vampires are nocturnal, thus never again to walk within the light (or grace) of God.  They have weaknesses concerning Holy relics, as they tend to remind the breed of their error and impending fate.  Silver is also said to be another of those reminders, based upon the Judas theory, silver is said to represent their transgressions as silver coins were earned by Judas for his betrayal of Christ.

I believe that in this, we find the most authentic origination theory.  This theory, in turn, explains our recurring fascination with the Vampire.  We have know the breed to be exact perfection, they are creatures of beauty as their makers were formed in the image of our creator.  They are powerful and all knowing, to be revered by those of us with mortal souls.  They have lived lifetimes yet still retain the original and forbidden knowledge never intended to be shared with our race.

In these facets, the Vampire is intriguing to us, yet, it is also within our mortality that we embrace their weaknesses as we are fragile and flawed by nature.  Can it be that even though the Vampire is as such because of God’s curse, that we as human yearn for them as they are as close to God as we could come without dying a mortal death? Indeed and in fact, I believe this to be the truth of it.

Having broadly answered two of the three questions, I will address the remaining; “Do I believe in Vampires?”  In a word, no.  I have found no evidence of like creatures in recent documents, at least not the depiction of Vampire that has become common within the last few centuries.  I do believe that there once was a hybrid race which possessed the characteristics associated with that of the Vampire.  They most certainly did exist.  The evidence is all around us.  New relics, sites and records are being excavated at this very moment.  Though these particular treasures are new to us, the history recorded and represented by them, only collaborates with existing legends and lore.

Though there is no reliable evidence that these creatures have endured in this day and age, there is no guarantee that they will not return.  They have been banished twice, once from Heaven then from Earth by means of the great flood.  That having been said, I will leave you with this verse:  Genesis 6:4 – There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that.

More detailed information on Lilith, Cain, Judas and other Vampire origination theories can be found on this site in past blogs!  Type your query into the search bar on the home page , happy reading!

Haunted Louisiana – The Magnolia Plantation

magnolia  The Magnolia Plantation still stands in all of it’s glory today, a aged reminder of prosperous cotton and tobacco industry that once thrived in a pre-Civil War Louisiana.  Originally constructed by Ambrose LeComte III in 1830 in order to expand the family cotton plantation which represented up to 5000 acres at one point; 2000 of those acres were cleared, planted and harvested by slave labor.  The crops that were harvested here would allow the family business to expand even further into to additional plantations.  The Magnolia plantation would remain the family home and business headquarters.

The grounds of the plantation still host over 18 individual improvements, ranging from slave quarters to a general store.  All of the buildings have long since been restored and stand in their former glory today, a far cry from the dilapidated and abandoned eyesore that they had become in the late 1980’s and 90’s.  All 3 of the family plantations had weathered the civil war era badly, the Magnolia would be the only to survive, at least until the 1970’s when cotton was still being picked by hand.

The haunted history of the Magnolia is mostly represented by the slave labor that built her.  Legend states that LeComte and his overseers were rather cruel and were known to torture the slaves ruthlessly.  The quarters, though provided for the slave families, were tiny, sometimes as many as 10 family members were housed in under 500 square feet with nothing more than a tiny fireplace as an amenity.  Devices of discipline such as leg stocks, have been uncovered on the property as well, a never forgotten symbol of past atrocities performed by those in a position of authority.

In 1897, after the Civil War had ended, the main house was in such a state of disrepair due to constant looting and vandalism.  LeComte would rebuild and exact replica of the original home on the same grounds, much of the lumber used in it’s construction was taken from the slave quarters, perhaps implanting the ghosts of mistreated slaves into it’s very foundation.

The slaves of the Magnolia were known for their practice of voodoo.  Many signs of their faith are still found on the grounds today.  Slaves that worked in the blacksmith shop on the plantation grounds were tasked with creating elaborate metal crosses for family grave sites.  The results were breathtaking but within the ornate decor of the crosses are voodoo symbols placed discretely by the creator in an attempt of seeking revenge upon the souls of their oppressors.

One of the most noted apparitions is that of a slave known as Aunt Agnes.  Agnes was known among the other slaves as a healer.  She is seen frequently around what is now known as cabin 1, thought to have been her home while living on the plantation.  During a paranormal investigation performed by the Travel Channel, equipment had been padlocked into the tiny improvement at the end of the day.  The next morning when the crew went to retrieve their equipment they found a line of yellow powder had been strewn across the threshold and the padlock was missing.  Inside they found that the equipment had been moved from one side of the cabin to the other, but nothing was missing other than the padlock.

On the grounds many other apparitions may be encountered.  Those that are brave enough to investigate may even hear the sounds of voices chanting at night, reminiscent of old voodoo rituals that were performed on the grounds.

Another of the famous haunts is said to be that of Mr. Miller who was known as the overseer of the plantation during the Civil War.  Mr. Miller met his demise one night when soldiers moved in on the estate with intentions of burning it to the ground.  Mr. Miller stood humbly on the front steps begging the soldiers to leave his home be; he was consequentially shot dead where he stood and is buried somewhere on the plantation grounds.  When things go missing around the plantation, it is typically Mr. Miller who is blamed.