Sunday, September 18, 2011

Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

It took me a while to decide which haunted location to use for this week's blog. I haven't been to very many (unfortunately), and there are so many great places out there with tons of history behind them. So, I decided that, for this week, a very well-known spot would be the target of my internet investigation. Yeah, yeah. You've seen it dozens of times on just as many television shows, but that doesn't make this location any less interesting.

July 1-3, 1863 were the three bloodiest days in American history. The battle of Gettysburg in Pennsylvania marked a turning point in the Civil War. General Meade's army spent three days in the blistering heat and humidity of PA to defeat Lee's troops and stop his attack on the North. Over 46,000 casualties were had at Gettysburg, leading to a significant number of ghost sightings and claims of the paranormal. It is said that ghosts may occur when people who have been killed in some unnatural way either don't realise they're dead, or have some unfinished business in the living world. I think both of these concepts apply to the soldiers of Gettysburg.

But you wanted to know what goes on there, right? Enough with the history, get to the hauntings!

What goes on here?

Well, it seems to depend on which area of Gettysburg you happen to visit. Said to be the most haunted is the Devil's Den, a location creepy enough with its stacked rocks and shadows. Hundreds of Union soldiers were killed here by a sharpshooter positioned within the rocks. More paranormal claims come from here than any other spot. 

Be wary when going to Triangular field. Bring extra batteries. There are dozens of claims of electrical equipment going dead when in this section of the battlefield, as well as images captured on film that definitely weren't there in person...

It's reported that there were so many killed soldiers left waiting for burial on Cemetery Hill that the ladies left in the little town of Gettysburg carried handkerchiefs over their mouths and noses that were stuffed with peppermint and vanilla. Guests here say that there are phantom smells left over from this gruesome scene, some good, and some very, very bad.

There have been tons of pictures, videos, EVPS (electronic voice phenomena) and personal experiences out of Gettysburg. Everything from "orbs" caught in unsuspecting visitor's photographs, to solid apparitions wheedling their ways into photos, videos and the eye lines of guests walking the hallowed grounds. 

Most of the photos and videos claim to involve the soldiers, the vast majority of the people that fell dead on the battlefield, although there have been a few cases in which people have said they saw or captured on some medium civilians. One website claims to have a picture of a girl in period clothing sitting on a log (although I can't necessarily see it). I suppose the best way to show you what goes on in Gettysburg is to give examples.
This is the website with the girl on a log photograph. They seem to have captured a lot of different ghosts on their adventures in Gettysburg, including a curious image of a soldier in full winter gear.
This is one of the most convincing videos from Gettysburg. Taken by Tom Underwood, it seems to show a residual haunting. Several soldiers (possibly Confederate) march up a hill no longer there.
I hate to just stick a bunch of Youtube links up here and call it good, but if you're really interested in hearing some EVPS from Gettysburg, this is the first place I will direct you to. Yes, there are mounds of fake ghost videos and whatnot on Youtube, but there are also some pretty convincing pieces of evidence on there, too.

If you'd like to learn more about Gettysburg itself, or the paranormal events that take place there, below are some websites that will help you get started. Happy haunting!


  1. My older brother swears he saw... something when we visited Gettysburg in 2000. It was around dusk and he came bolting back to the truck and was all "dude, ghosts".
    Considering that one of the reasons for the short length of the Gettysburg Address was due to the stinking miasma of ten thousand sun-baked corpses-smell that hung around the area when Lincoln visited it, I believe that he saw something, at least.

  2. Of course the bad smell might have also been just because it's Pennsylvania, which smells bad to begin with.

  3. That's awesome! I would love to talk to him about it.

  4. So interesting! While in Gettysburg for a family vacation my Dad could not stop complaining about the awful rotting smell. To be honest, we were all getting quite irritated with him. It was so bad he was getting sick and walking around our hotel building looking for the dead animal he knew just had to be somewhere around. Later that night my Mom was reading a book she picked up from the visitor's center, and there was a passage about phantom smells. Perhaps some people are more sensitive to these things than others?

  5. Some people are definitely more susceptible to certain kinds of paranormal activity than others. Your dad just might be one of them! Did none of you smell the rotting odor at all? That's incredibly interesting! I wonder who or what decided your dad would be a good target? lol

    Thank you so much for sharing that with me!