The medical examiner, Dr. Harold Metcalf ? who also did not believe in vampires ? was on hand at Chestnut Hill Cemetery during the exhumations. The corpses of Mary and Olive were well decomposed. Mary was partially mummified and had no blood in her heart. Mary Olive was only a skeleton with a thick growth of hair remaining. But the body of Mercy was judged by some to be in exceptionally good condition; however Metcalf said her state was natural and not exceptional. Witnesses who had been at her wake swore that her body had shifted in the coffin.
Brown instructed Dr. Metcalf to remove Mercy's heart and liver. Witnesses were astonished when clotted and decomposed blood dripped from the organs, which they took to be a sure sign of vampirism, even though Metcalf assured them it was not an unusual occurrence for a nine-week-old corpse. Brown took the organs to a rock and burned them. The ashes were saved. Dr. Metcalf told Edwin to take the ashes and mix a tiny amount in medicine he'd prescribed, and drink the mixture. Edwin allegedly followed the instructions, but died soon thereafter.
Over the years, the story has grown and become embellished. It has been claimed that six or seven girls in the Brown family died before Mercy was exhumed, and they all bore "the mark of the vampire" on their throats when they died (the vampire biting victims on the throat was popularized in fiction).
Mercy's grave continues to attract visitors. People report seeing a blue light or a glowing ball of light hovering over the grave, and other visitors claim they can hear a girl's voice whisper, "Please help me, let me out." It may be imagination, or the sighing of the wind ? or perhaps the spirit of Mercy Brown still lies restless in her grave.
With Permission and many many thanks to Rosemary Ellen Guiley
and Jan Burke http://janburke.blogspot.com/2007/05/ta ... art-4.html
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Mercy Brown, Rhode Island's Vampire Part3
Tuberculosis has over the years been connected with Witchcraft, Vampirism and other folklore stories over the years
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