For Halloween, a bit of news from KOVELS:
Vampires on TV today are lovable, not dangerous, so there seems to be no need for vampire-killing kits. Killing kits were needed when people were threatened by vampires. Kits have been sold at five or more auctions over the last several years. Each kit was assembled, so the contents varied. Prices ranged from $1,000 on eBay years ago, to $12,000 and $20,300 in 2003, to a claimed $35,000 asking price for a kit eBay wouldn’t allow. Last year a kit in an American walnut case sold for $14,850. It held stakes, mirrors, a gun with silver bullets, crosses, a Bible, holy water, candles, and garlic.
This Saturday, October 31, 2009, another kit will be auctioned. It’s in a rosewood case with mother-of-pearl inlay in the shape of a cross. The required pistol and silver bullets are in a small coffin-shaped case. There are also holy water vials, a prayer book, a cleaver, and a mirror. Wonder how these things protect you from vampires? Hold a mirror in front of a person and if there is no reflection, that person is a vampire. Religious items, garlic, and candle flames scare vampires and chase them away. Silver bullets or a stake through the heart kills vampires. Most vampire kits probably were made after 1897, when the novel “Dracula” was published and made people fear vampires. The kits were made as souvenirs sold at hotels in Europe.