The old town of Whitby can be found at the foot of the church stairs. The houses back up the cliff, with narrow alleyways leading down to the harbour. Beyond Church Street, is the Captain Cook museum. In 1746 the house belonged to Captain John Walker, a ship owner whose vessels carried coal from the Tyne to the Thames. It was in this year that he took on an apprentice, the 17-year-old James Cook. Captain Cook, was killed during a violent quarrel on the beach at Kealakekue Bay, following the theft of a boat from "The Discovery".
It was this harbor full of history and myth that played a part in Bram Stoker's writing in 1890. He had been working on a novel inspired by Hungarian adventurer Arminius Vambery who had told Stoker of eastern European tales of the blood-hungry living dead. He was so impressed by the surroundings, menacing aspects of the immense stone abbey and St Mary's Cathedral looming over the small town, that he used Whitby in his novel Dracula as the place where the seductive Count meets and kills Lucy.