|Also known as||
|Date of birth||
March 4, 1946
|Year of death||
|Manner of death||
Jumped off Widows’ Hill prompted by Jeb Hawkes
New York, USA
|We have 11 images of Dark Shadows Victoria Winters|
Hammond Foundling Home EditThe infant Victoria was dropped off on the doorstep of the Hammond Foundling Home in New York in the winter of 1946, in a cardboard box with a note pinned to it, stating, "Her name is Victoria. I cannot take care of her." The home took her in and gave her the last name "Winters" after the season (4).
- The wording of the letter will later be changed to "CAN'T take care of her" (34).
When she turned two, letters began arriving at the home every month, addressed to Victoria. Inside was $50 in cash and nothing else. The letters were never signed, but they were postmarked Bangor, Maine (4).
When she was six years old, an attendant at the home told Victoria that her parents were coming to pick her up. She knew it was untrue, but was still very excited and felt special for about two weeks (21).
Like many of the other children, Victoria lived a relatively unhappy life in the foundling home, never knowing who her real parents or family were. She once got into a fight with a girl and gave her a bloody nose (23).
One girl at the home who was nine or ten years old used to chase people away because she didn't like herself and figured no one else would either. A man eventually came and talked with her over and over again until the girl realized her problem (15).
- Victoria told this story to David Collins, but she may have been making it up to help him deal with his problem.
One morning in 1966, Vicki received a letter from Elizabeth Collins Stoddard in Collinsport, Maine offering her a job as a governess at Collinwood. Never having heard of Mrs. Stoddard or Collinsport, she investigated and found that it's fifty miles from Bangor, from where she'd received money as a child (1).
Victoria accepted the job and took a train from New York to Collinsport, hoping it held the answers to her past. Burke Devlin was aboard the same train, but she didn't meet him until they de-boarded and he offered her a ride into town (1). When asked asked why she hired her, Elizabeth claimed that her brother Roger had been recommended her by someone at the orphanage (2). Roger later "confirmed" this fact, despite being initially ignorant of it, but Victoria knew something was being kept from her (25).
Victoria's job was to tutor Roger's son David, but she soon learned that he was a very disturbed boy. Upon first seeing Vicki, David declared that he hated her (4). David felt that Vicki was there to replace his mother and rejected Vicki at every turn (6). Vicki became extra concerned when she learned that David had attempted to kill his father; however, David stole the evidence before she could present it to Elizabeth (25, 26).
Victoria developed an interest in Josette Collins and appeared to share an affinity with her ghost. Many times, Josette's spirit would contact her to warn her of danger and even appeared to her when Victoria's life was threatened by Matthew Morgan. Twice, Josette used Victoria as her medium during séances.
Vicki was attracted to Burke Devlin from the very first time she met him, but became wary of his hostile relationship with the Collins family. She briefly dated Frank Garner, but the romance soon fizzled out. She and Burke eventually became close friends, and after he patched up his relationship with Roger Collins, they began dating seriously. They became engaged and made plans to live on the Collins estate, when Burke was killed in a plane accident in Brazil. His body was never recovered.
During a seance held at Collinwood, Vicki was mysteriously transported back in time, to the year 1795. While she was there she briefly mistook Jeremiah Collins for her late fiancé, Burke Devlin. Jeremiah warmed to her, and they had a mutual attraction, which ended with the arrival of Josette DuPres.
Victoria found Josette's arrival very troubling, as she bore a striking resemblance to her friend, Maggie Evans, and was engaged to marry Barnabas. Vicki was well aware of the Collins family history, and knew that Josette was destined to marry Jeremiah. She unfortunately made this prediction out loud, and when Josette did elope with Jeremiah, several people began to suspect her of witchcraft.
Barnabas was a friend of Victoria's, and did his best to defend her to his suspicious relatives. When his aunt Abigail sent for a witch-hunter from Salem, Reverend Trask, Barnabas hid her from his persecution. She was eventually found and sent to jail for witchcraft.
While in jail, a young man named Peter Bradford volunteered to defend her. During her incarceration Vicki fell in love with Peter, and he with her. She was found guilty of witchcraft, and sentenced to die. At the jail, Peter promised that he would find her, wherever she was. However, at her execution she was suddenly thrust back to the 20th century, and the original Collins family governess, Phyllis Wicke, was hanged instead.
Jeff ClarkEditVicki's memories of the eighteenth century were confused and disjointed, mostly she thought of her lost love, Peter Bradford. Barnabas realized that Vicki really had gone to the past, and was frightened that she may have discovered his secret. He rushed her into a quick engagement, but as they left Collinwood to be married, they got into a car accident when Vicki saw a man who looked just like Peter.
At the hospital the mysterious man visited her. She called him Peter, but he insisted his name was Jeff Clark. Vicki kept insisting that he was her lost love, who had come to find her. Jeff was actually suffering from amnesia, and truly did not know his real identity. He eventually fell in love with Vicki, and proposed marriage to her, which she happily accepted.
Vicki's wedding to Jeff was planned to take place at Collinwood, with Elizabeth Stoddard serving as her Matron of Honour, and Roger Collins giving her away. However, on the day of the wedding, Jeff was overcome with the fear that he was in fact Peter Bradford, and left the wedding to find out for sure. Vicki was hurt, but understood.Eventually Jeff regained his memories of his past life, and he and Vicki were married. However, the morning after their wedding, Jeff was pulled back in time, and disappeared before Vicki's eyes. She was overcome with grief, and sadly returned to Collinwood, where she spent weeks mourning the loss of her husband.
Peter was finally able to connect with his wife, across time, and she rejoined him in the past.
Final Fate Edit
Victoria and Peter Bradford made plans to leave and live happily together after Barnabas' rescue in 1796 (665). Peter's ghost revealed later that Victoria had died not long after when Leviathan Jeb Hawkes caused her to leap to her death from Widows' Hill (967). She therefore fulfilled the prophesy of being the third woman to die from the cliffs. (The other two were Josette and Samantha Collins).
Victoria's sudden disappearance from Collinwood further cemented the townspeople's belief that the house was haunted.
Victoria's preferred drink was sherry (34).
Victoria had no preference at all as to being called "Vicki" or "Victoria." (2). For the most part, the Collins family in the 18th century called her Victoria, while their 20th century counterparts called her Vicki.
Character Development Edit
Dan Curtis first dreamt of a dark-haired girl riding a train to an estate, which was the inspiration for Dark Shadows. In Shadows on the Wall, the series' bible, Victoria was initially called Sheila March until the name was changed to suggest a more regal, older time. Her search for answers to her mysterious past, which was the driving force behind her accepting the governess position at Collinwood, would have originally led to the revelation that Victoria was the product of an affair between Paul Stoddard and Betty Hanscomb. Elizabeth was to have discovered Victoria's existence the night she "murdered" Paul, and her guilt over his death prompted her to send money to the Foundling Home. However, these plans were eventually scrapped--despite early references to Betty (which can be seen as red herrings)--when the Dark Shadows production team decided that Victoria would be Elizabeth's illegitimate daughter instead. This was due, in part, to Alexandra Moltke's close resemblance to Joan Bennett.
As the Adam/Eve storyline of 1968 began to wind down, Ron Sproat was in the stages of slanting the plot to reveal Victoria's lineage when Moltke left the series due to her pregnancy. She was briefly replaced twice, but neither actress was (reportedly) accepted by the audience. Attempts were made to persuade Moltke to return, but, unhappy with her diminished role and content to be a stay-at-home mother to her new son, she declined. Any and all plans for the character were ultimately shelved, and Victoria Winters was unceremoniously written out with an off-screen death, leaving her as much of a mystery as when she first arrived.
Return to Collinwood Edit
With the approval of Dan Curtis Productions, an original audio play featuring many members of the original cast was written and recorded. During the reading of Elizabeth's will, it is finally revealed that Victoria was, in fact, her illegitimate daughter.
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