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Willie Loomis, the handyman of Collinwood, an 18th-century mansion in Maine, accidentally releases vampire Barnabas Collins from his coffin. Barnabas gains entrance to the mansion by introducing himself as a cousin from England, and Willie becomes his first victim. Carolyn Collins, the lady of the house, is Barnabas' next victim, and doctors Julia Hoffman and T. Eliot Stokes are called in to determine the cause of death. Their diagnosis of vampirism is confirmed when Carolyn returns from the dead to seek her own victims, but she is killed by a stake driven through her heart. Dr. Hoffman becomes fond of Barnabas even though she knows that he is a vampire and seeks a medical cure for him, but he soon makes both doctors his victims, along with Roger Collins, Carolyn's husband. Barnabas, enamored of Maggie Evans, a beautiful governess who reminds him of his lost love, is planning to make her his vampire bride when Jeff Clark, Maggie's fiancé, kills Barnabas with an arrow through the heart.