From the archive, originally posted by: [ spectre ]

http://blog.wired.com/photos/uncategorized/2007/04/11/kit.jpg

Vampire Killing Kits From the Late Nineteenth Century

http://blog.wired.com/tableofmalcontents/2007/04/vampire_hunter_.html

Auction hounds are snapping up “vampire killing kits” and “vampire
hunting kits” manufactured by a nineteenth century quack named Ernst
Blomberg. The kits, which have been found in Australia and sold by at
least two auction houses (including Southebys, reportedly for
$12,000), include silver bullets, a wooden stake, holy water, and
other important vampire-destroying items. Back in 2003, Gunbroker.com
auctioned off one of the kits, and posted a transcription of the
instructions that came with the original box:

Vampire Killing Kit

The accoutrements for the destruction of the Vampire

This box contains the items considered necessary for the
protection of persons who travel into certain little known countries
in Easter Europe where the populace are plagued with a peculiar
manifestation of evil, known as Vampires… Professor Ernst Blomberg
respectfully requests that the purchaser of this kit carefully studies
his book. Should evil manifestations become apparent, he is then
equiped to deal with them efficiently… Professor Blomberg wishes to
announce his grateful thanks to that well known gunmaker of Liege,
Nicholas Plombeur, whose help in compiling of the special items, the
silver bullets,etc., has been most efficient. The items enclosed are
as follows…

1. An efficient pistol with its usual accoutrements
2. A quantity of bullets of the finest silver
3. Powdered flowers of garlic (one phial)
4. Flour of Brimstone (one phial)
5. Wooden stake (Oak)
6. Ivory crucifix
7. Holy Water (one phial)
8. Professer Blomberg’s New Serum

One wonders most about item #8. A “new serum”? Everything else seems
perfectly reasonable, at least to this avid watcher of Buffy the
Vampire Slayer. I’m guessing that these vampire killing kits were all
over the place in junk shops of the nineteenth century, and that
they’re coming to our attention now mostly because browsable auction
sites make it easier for the general public to see the crazy shit that
routinely gets auctioned off to antiquarians.