Dracula's Househunting Heir
German Prince fears Neo-Nazi firestarters
by David Johnson
Claiming that Neo-Nazis keep setting fire to his crumbling castle home in Schenkendorf, south of Berlin, the last living member of the Dracula family is planning to move to England.
The British newspaper The Daily Telegraph reported on Halloween 2000 that Ottomar Rudolphe Vlad Dracula Prince Kretzulesco is looking for a medieval castle in England where he can live and work. Prince Kretzulesco said that Neo-Nazis have tried to burn down his home, named Castle Dracula, ten times since March 2000. They also painted a swastika on a building on the estate, he said.
Adopted Descendant of Dracula
The prince is not a blood descendant of Dracula's family. Born Otto Berbig, he was adopted by the late Princess Katharina Olympia Caradja, a direct descendant of the famous Romanian aristocrat, Prince Vlad, who wanted the family line to continue.
The prince has owned his castle in the Brandenburg countryside for five years. He had been restoring it. Although the palace needs repair, it is full of antiques. A former antique dealer, Kretzulesco said he built his collection to replace Dracula family heirlooms that were stolen when the late dictator Nicolae Ceausescu governed Romania.
Blood Donations for the Red Cross
Kretzulesco made also headlines in the summer of 1999, when he helped the German Red Cross solicit blood donations. He attended showings of vampire movies held to benefit the Red Cross and gave his autograph to those who donated blood.
Sources: In Search of Dracula: The History of Dracula and Vampires, by Raymond T. McNally and Radu Florescu
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