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About the FVZA

A History: Part I

By Hugo Pecos

An early vampire patrol
Vampires arrived in the United States with the first European settlers and followed the general population shifts of Americans in the early days of the Republic. During this time, fighting vampires was a task left to individual bounty hunters and local militias known as the Vampire National Guard. As the country grew and became increasingly urbanized, a more ambitious vampire abatement program became necessary. The Copper Creek Siege of 1855, in which vampires took over an entire California mining town, underscored the country's need for an organized, well-trained force to combat the growing plague. The Civil War delayed implementation until 1869, when President Ulysses S. Grant officially formed the Federal Vampire & Zombie Agency.

President Grant
Initially, the FVZA was a specialized branch of the Armed Forces, modeled after similar troops in France and Great Britain. These troops were known as the "Vanguard," a contraction of Vampire National Guard. They worked mostly in large cities: by day, they scoured likely undead hiding places; by night, they patrolled areas of high undead activity—slums, waterfronts, parks, etc. Though they were underfunded, ill-equipped and often shuttled off to fight wars on foreign soil, the FVZA made some strides in controlling resident vampire and zombie populations. However, the huge surges of immigrants coming to America helped increase the U.S. vampire population to 300,000 by the turn of the century.

Zozobra Project security checkpoint
In 1897, President William McKinley moved the FVZA into the Department of Justice. The Agency was split into two groups: a scientific team in Washington, and a military unit with bases all over the U.S. In 1901, new President Teddy Roosevelt hired his friend Hilton Dickerson as FVZA Director. Dickerson ruled the FVZA with an iron fist for the next 34 years. When the zombism vaccine was created in France in 1911, the FVZA administered vaccination programs in the U.S., while the "Vanguard" focused on destroying remaining zombies.

With zombies largely eradicated, the focus of the FVZA shifted to vampiric research and abatement. Unfortunately, a 1935 Supreme Court ruling declaring that vampires have the same rights afforded to all citizens complicated the FVZA's job greatly. In response, President Franklin Roosevelt signed the Emergency Relief Act in 1936. The Act converted the Agency into an undercover operation. Roosevelt also put together the Zozobra Project, which brought the best medical minds in the world to a secret lab in New Mexico to work on a vampirism vaccine. The Project was operated by the FVZA and reaped its greatest success with the creation of a working vaccine in 1950.

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