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10 Facts About Bram Stoker

By Yona Williams    10/6/09

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From making friends with U.S. presidents to seeing the world by the side of an actor, Bram Stoker lived a colorful life that allowed him time to pen one of the most memorable vampire tales. In this article, you will learn more about the man behind the Count.

1) His Birth
Born Abraham Stoker on November 8, 1847, in Dublin, Ireland, to parents Abraham Stoker and Margaret Isabella Balfour. He was the third of seven children.

2) Athletic Skills
Attending Trinity College in Dublin between 1964 and 1870, Bram was known as quite the athlete despite suffering serious health problems as a child, which left him bedridden as a youth. He was also given the honor of 'University Athlete' during his attendance at the school. He would eventually graduate from school with a degree in mathematics.

3) Published Non-Fiction Book
During his time as a civil servant in 1876, Stoker penned a non-fiction book titled 'The Duties of Clerks of Petty Sessions in Ireland,' which was published in 1879.

4) Business Manager
Holding the position of business manager of the infamous Lyceum Theatre in London from 1879 to 1898, Stoker was able to add to his income by writing an assortment of sensational novels – one of which would later become the vampire-based tale of Dracula.

5) Assistant
Stoker was once the personal assistant of actor Henry Irving, which allowed him to travel the world whenever the actor was on tour. Ironically, he never visited Eastern Europe, which would serve as the setting for his most famous publication. After Irving passed away, Stoker went on to manage the productions at the Prince of Wales Theatre and also became employed at the Daily Telegraph. Mostly, he spent a great deal of time on his writings.

6) Presidential Meetings
Stoker visited the United States – a destination he quite enjoyed. By Irving's side, he got a chance to visit the White House on two different occasions, holding conversation with the likes of William McKinley and Teddy Roosevelt.

7) His Spouse
Stoker married Florence Balcombe in Dublin in 1878. The daughter of Lieutenant-Colonel James Balcombe of 1 Marino Crescent, Florence was known for her beauty and was once sought after by Oscar Wilde. In the end, Florence would outlive Bram by 25 years – dying in London on May 25th, 1937. Her ashes were scattered at the Gardens of Rest.

8) His Death
After suffering more than one stroke, Stoker died on April 20, 1912 at the age of 64 in London. It is believed that he may have succumbed to tertiary syphilis. His body was cremated and his ashes placed in a display urn at Golders Green Crematorium.

9) His Child
Bram had a son, who was named Irving Noel Thornley Stoker. After his death in 1961, Irving's ashes were added to the urn that held his father's remains.

10) Family Tradition?
Expanding off of Stoker's original 'The Un-Dead' title, his great-grandnephew (Dacre Stoker) and a Dracula documentarian named Ian Holt have combined their talents to write a sequel to Dracula. Dacre claims that portions of the publication are based on material Stoker meant for the original novel, as well as from Bram's notes.

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