Howdy key lovers!
Today's honorary key has a story that comes with a twinge of mystery and a dash of horror. Attention bibliophiles, today's post is for you!
The Count's Key
Bran Castle is a mighty fortress nestled between the regions of Transylvania and Wallachia in central Romania. But the Bran fortress is not just any castle; it has been given the title of Dracula's Castle. Dracula, a novel written by Bram Stoker in 1897, describes a castle in Transylvania with geographic surroundings very similar to Bran Castle. While Bran Castle is not crumbling into ruins like the fictional castle described in the horror novel, it nevertheless bears a likeness to the description of Count Dracula's castle. The character of Dracula and his eerie dwelling is mesmerizing to anyone who loves a good horror novel. Stoker's description of Count Dracula gave rise to the myth of vampires, as well as the modern day definition of a vampire. And while Count Dracula himself is a terrifying being, the setting of the story is the icing on the horror cake. The disturbing description of a seemingly haunted castle--from which those who enter never return--adds heaps of suspense to the story by giving readers a sense of uncertainty. We all know that a home can be just as creepy as the person or people living in it...
Here at the Baldpate, we know a little something about the significance of novella to buildings, seeing as our story comes from the novel The Seven Keys to Baldpate. The story behind a structure, fictional or not, gives a building character and transforms it from a place to an experience. That being said, Dracula's Castle is a place of great significance to horror fans everywhere. The key to a secret passage from the well to the royal garden of Dracula's Castle now resides in the key room of the Baldpate Inn. Gifted by Alexandra Claudia Leonte, one of our former museum curators from Romania, the key is over nine inches long and exhibits a very intricate design on its bit. This key is treasured for its literary and historical significance, and we are proud to display it for guests here in the key room.
And for those who really love a good haunting, catch this: although Count Dracula is a fictitious character, people living in the village of Bran believe that evil spirits actually exist in the village. It is believed that these spirits show themselves as normal people during the day, but have another personality that comes out at night to haunt people. The many mysterious circumstances that have historically surrounded the village of Bran gave rise to the town's haunted folklore, but it is up to you to decide how much truth lies in these legends!
Blog written by:
Museum Curator, The Baldpate Inn