The Snakeman Who Was Bitten Nearly 200 Times And Lived To Be 100


Since he was 7 years old produced in 1910 Bill Haast was interested in snakes. This interest turned into something of an obsession during summer excursions to Boy Scout camp, when he was 11 starting. The following year Bill endured his first snake bite he attempted to catch. At the time, Bill was four miles in the camps first aid station, so he used the normal field dressing of the day (making crossed cuts over the fang marks and using potassium permanganate) and walked back to camp. He recovered with no long term bad effects, although his arm had swollen before getting back to camp.

When he returned to camp the next year, he endured another bite this time a big copperhead, from still another snake he was attempting to catch. Having learned his lesson in the preceding year, he was equipped with a snakebite kit and was instantly injected with anti-venom. Despite the treatment that was early, he was hospitalized next bite.

Not met with snakes in the wild, Bill started gathering them via mail order catalogues at the same time. When he brought his first one residence, he afterwards said his panicked mom fled the flat for three days refusing to return until he got rid of the snakes and refused to be near it. Shortly she agreed his small group of snakes, as well as grow, he could keep.


Assured and unsettled, Bill spent in high school slipping from the building the second after dropping him away his mother was out of sight. Hed afterward just roam around all day long. By age 16 in the late 1920s, he joined a roadside snake show and gave up the ruse, expecting to make his way after reading in a catalogue the diamondback rattle snake he bought was sent from Florida.

After the traveling snake show he did really make his way where he supported himself by helping a bootlegger and rooming with. Finally the bootlegging entrepreneur was detained while this gave him considerable time and chance to capture and analyze various snakes. Now, Bill had a vision- to begin a snake farm. Sadly for him, cash was needed by that. So he determined to return to school where he studied to become a plane mechanic.

Upon graduation, he traveled the world, enabling him to gather more exotic snakes and was hired by Pan Am as a flight engineer. His snakes were usually brought by him back via storing them away. He said of this there were no laws forbidding it, but it was nt appreciated by the crew members.

Besides bringing them on airplanes back home and gathering frequently lethal snakes from all over the world, Invoice spent his time saving cash up to construct a big snake farm. By 1946, he started assembling his Serpentarium, sold his house, and managed to buy a plot of land in south Miami.

Sadly for him, Ann, his wife, didnt just understand his fixation nor the new course she shortly divorced him, and her husband was taking with his life.

Undeterred, one year later Statement opened the Serpentarium with a skeleton staff of himself, his new wife, Clarita, who was considerably more encouraging of his small snake venture, and his son, Bill Jr., who, after being bitten four times by the snakes, left the snake farm to seek safer work.

At any specified time having in excess of 500 snakes on his small farm, Bill amassed an impressive collection of venomous snakes from all over the world, over the next 20 years. Bill found means to make a lot of cash off his snake farm, although you might believe this kind of enterprise wouldnt be really rewarding. Income was produced by him . He milked venom before a paying crowd daily from his 60 species of snakes. This created earnings but also from your sale of the raw material needed to make anti-venom- a g of which would net just as much as $5,000 in some instances, taking 100 or to milkings so create one g.


Being something of a dangerous profession with random stings not unusual, Bill additionally determined to make an effort to use the mithridatism strategy to protecting himself against the snakes- specifically, injecting himself with slowly increasing doses of venom from distinct snakes he milked frequently, for example, Cape, King and Indian cobras.

This worked. In the 1950s, although he was bitten by cobras around 20 times, he’d few ill-effects and didnt want any anti-venom. His resistance to many snake bites had not grown so weak that he regularly given blood to treat snakebite victims when anti-venom for a specific kind of venom was otherwise unavailable. Based on the New York Times, over 20 individuals who probably would have perished without the antibodies in his blood were saved due to his contributions, including in one case where Bill flew all the way to Venezuela to give a pint of his blood to be used for a lad whod been bitten. For this particular act, Bill was made an honorary citizen of the state by the Venezuelan authorities. (Usually snake anti-venom is made via injecting diluted venom into specific mammals and then gathering the resultant antibodies from your creatures blood.)

While the farm was quite rewarding a non-snake-associated disaster caused the closure of the Serpentarium. You see, as well as snakes, Bill additionally kept crocodiles and alligators on the assumptions in a pit. In the late 1970s, a six-year old boy fell into the pit. Seeing a delicious bite, among the crocodiles lunged for the lad before a random bystander, the lads dad and Nicolas Caulineau, could get to him. Both guys did manage to get on top of the one short ton crocodile that is close and tried to free the lad, but it was too late.

While now Bill would happen to be sued into oblivion with this, the lads parents failed to blame the injury on Bill. However, he never forgave himself and not long after shut the snake farm… but not before firing nine rounds from his Luger pistol into the crocodile under consideration, ultimately resulting in it expiring about one hour after being shot.

Years previously, Bill developed a keen curiosity about the medicinal uses of snake venom when he and an University of Miami researcher experimented with its utility in treating polio, with supporting results, before Dr. Jonas Salk came up with an effective and safe vaccine against the disorder.


Without his snake farm Bill decided to dedicate his time to investigating various snake venoms medicinal properties with medical professionals. This culminated in Bill and a Miami physician treating over 6,000 patients suffering from multiple sclerosis a with and arthritis specific combination of snake venom. While some of the research and results were promising the FDA shut the pair down, asserting that Bills making procedure on the venom used for shots had not been extensive enough.

Undeterred, at the Miami Serpentarium Laboratories persevered in 1990 Bill he created. Bill continued to inject himself with many different venoms, which came from 32 different snake species. A sample size of one definitely isnt good enough to give authoritative credit although he’d long believed that his day-to-day venom regimen led to his good health. Aging is difficult when he reached 100 years old, he was asked relating to this, saying. Occasionally, you are feeling not useful. But I constantly believed I ‘d live this long. It was instinctive. I usually told folks Id live past 100, and I believe I ‘ll. Can it be the venom? I dont understand.

Bill Haast expired of natural causes after turning 100. In his life, he said he was bitten by snakes around 173 times, 20 of which were almost deadly.

By having an eastern diamondback rattlesnake that made one of his hands seeming a bit, he had a fairly ugly episode one of the more prominent of these strikes. In another strike that was major, a Malayan pit viper managed to cause substantial damage. In still another case, its fangs sank into among his fingers, causing the finger turning black virtually immediately. Concerned, he called over his wife and had her lop off the blackened piece of his fingertip before the venom could spread.


Within an episode in 1989, a particularly horrible strike from a Pakistani pit viper almost killed him, but according to The Associated Press, someone in the White House managed to use among their contacts in Iran to get uncommon vials of the anti-venom with that state to Bill, who ultimately recovered.

He did note they dont make the greatest pets, You could have a snake for 30 years and the second you leave his cage door broken, hes gone. And theyll never come to you personally unless youre holding a mouse

He said, The craft of living isn’t an instinct when asked about his ideas on life, having lived to over 100; it must be learned. Isnt it a pity it takes all of it before we understand the best way to use that which we no longer have?