The Mysterious Ghosts of Gettysburg - Unsolved Mysteries

Is the battlefield at Gettysburg haunted?

At Gettysburg, bodies covered the field

Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

CASE DETAILS

A mysterious man in Civil War garb

Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Three days of brutal combat at the height of the Civil War left 50,000 Union and Confederate casualties.  The creeks literally ran red with blood.  Some report that Gettysburg is still haunted by the ghosts of those cut down in battle. Author and historian Mark Nesbitt offered this theory as to why:

“At Gettysburg, there was so much emotional energy expended in a short period of time, from the 15-year-old kid who was scared to death that he’d never make it home, or the 40-year-old man who’d just been shot through the lungs and was dying and thinking about his family.  You have to think that some of it must remain.”

Many of the ghostly sightings have been reported by Civil War re-enactors. Dressed in period costumes, they re-stage the battle, blow by blow.  One re-enactor, Ray Hock, says he and a friend were approached by a haggard figure, too realistic to be just another
re-enactor:

“I think I seen a ghost.  I think this guy had original equipment on.  Original coat.  Everything, to me, points out that it was original.”

Ray says a ghost gave him this bullet

Ray says the soldier handed them each two authentic-looking cartridges. When they looked up, the mysterious visitor had vanished.

Live ammunition hasn’t been allowed at Gettysburg for 100 years.  Ray, a university expert, determined that the cartridges were genuine Civil War issue, vintage 1863.

In the summer of 1993, some friends were at Gettysburg for the battle re-enactments.  One evening, as they hiked along a creek called Bloody Run, they came across a man laying in the bushes.  Richard Knapp described what he saw:

“He appeared to be a man laying there, but he wasn’t solid like you and I are.  I mean, he was more of a hazy mist.  He was shivering ’cause it looked like he was in a lot of pain.  I couldn’t go no further.  Emotionally, I broke down and cried.  I was shaking.  I had to actually have somebody come back and lead me out of the trail.”

The terror of Gettysburg was not limited to the battlefield. According to Mark Nesbitt, Army surgeons, lacking medicine and proper instruments, handled most injuries with one quick treatment—amputation:

“Many of the men underwent amputations of limbs without any anesthetic whatsoever, except perhaps a shot of good old-fashioned army whiskey.  So the Civil War hospital then was probably as close to a descent into hell on Earth as these Civil War soldiers would have ever gotten to.”

One building, Pennsylvania Hall, was a field hospital during the battle. Today it’s the offices of Gettysburg College. But some say the cries of the wounded still echo here.  One night close to midnight, two school administrators were alone in the building. They were using the elevator when the doors suddenly opened onto a real-looking Civil War hospital. Mark Nesbitt described what the women experienced:

“The stench of a hospital was all around. As they peered out on this, of course they began to panic.  There was no place to go. Suddenly, one of the orderlies turned to them and looked at them beseechingly, as if he needed help with this horrible task that he was doing or perhaps help to get out of this forced incarceration he’d been in for the last 13 decades.”

That night, the two officials told their story to a campus security officer. Timon Linn,
chief of security at Gettysburg College, remembered the incident:

“I would have to say that something frightened them. I can’t explain it.  Although I don’t believe in ghosts, I guess to a certain extent I believe that they saw maybe what they said they saw only because I know them as credible people.”

Is it possible these ghostly sightings were imagined?  Or, will the spirits of Gettysburg’s soldiers remain here forever?


Watch this case now on Amazon Prime in season eight with Robert Stack and in season two with Dennis Farina. Also available on YouTube with Dennis Farina. Various seasons available now on Hulu.

 

10 Comments

  1. Tia Zobelein

    Also, addition to my comment. I later saw union soldier shaped clouds as we drove back.

    Reply

  2. Tia Zobelein

    I went to Gettysburg today. It was so amazing and wonderful to see and learn about. Although, while I was there, I had a strange feeling that I was meant to be there. That I was possibly there before. It was strange and saddening. Could it mean something in a past life? I felt the same thing at the titanic exhibit too.

    Reply

  3. lj

    hello, I am ablind guy, and for many years I have felt a connection to confederate soldiers? I am blind, and middle aged, but recently moved to nc? since here I am constantly barraged with thoughts, music, and spirits, please know I am a mid level gifrted phrophetic person, Christian, need some new friends 5to talk to of this, I am very stable, and not a flake

    Reply

  4. Deb

    Oct 2015 my friend and I went on a late night ghost tour behind the middle school just off of Cemetery Hill. I walked on with the group when I turned around and noticed my friend still standing at the edge of the woods. I walked back to her and stopped dead in my tracks, I heard the sound of a snare drum and whistling. When I asked my friend if she heard it she shh’d me and said she was recording it. There was another gentleman from our group standing behind her that said he heard the same thing. We ran back to join our group and tell our tour guide what we heard. To this day it still baffles us.

    Reply

  5. Norma

    I was in Gettysburg in 6/11/16 for a graduation party. We had my hubby, 2 of my brother in laws and sister in laws with us. Now the sister in law who lives in Fairfield grew up in Gettysburg. One of my sister in law, Bonita, never been there, never been on a paranormal investigation. We went to the battlefield and then ended up at Sach’s bridge. We waited for the crowd to leave and then started on the investigation. We let Bonita take pictures. Now no one was on the bridge at this particular time. She was taking pictures with her phone. What came on that pic took my breath away. You could see what looked like a soldier looking down at hat looks like a little girl. It’s pretty awesome. I wish I could post it here.

    Reply

  6. teresa

    my husband & i visited gettysburg last sept, for 1 week. we were truly amazed, at all the history.however, after, being at the battlefield, on our second visit, only i noticed, a horrible stench, that followed me where ever we went, in town, back to our hotel, shopping, near the college, ect.. the horrific smell, didn’t seem to bother anyone else?? i am a nurse, smell of death?? spirit, trying to connect to me??

    Reply

    • Judith

      Hello Theresa. Our family visited Gettysburg in the mid 80’s. Years later my mom had mentioned the smells as well, she had told me that she didn’t say anything at that time because she thought we all could smell the same – of course we didn’t. In the past my mom had been told she was an old soul and had always had that extra sense with other situations that she encountered.

      Reply

    • Anonymous

      sounds like a bunch of “bull bot bull run

      Reply

    • Norma

      You there’s been reports of smelling rotten flesh on the battlefield and in certain places in town. I’m a nurse too. I smelled it once in the triangular field area. My guess is a residual energy or smell? You should hear the ghost box responses when you tell these soldier spirits you are a nurse! Lol. It’s amazing!

      Reply

  7. Patricia Sites-Williams

    It is true. I have no doubts. Being born and raised at Gettysbutg we lived 5 miles west on Rt. 30. My house is still there I heard it was there during that time. There use to be many sheds and a gorgeous huge white barn. Our house had its moments of knowing we were not the only ones living there. Patricia

    Reply

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7.1 This Website may use a standard technology called a “cookie” to collect information about how you use the Website. Cookies reside on your computer and help our Website to recognize your computer’s browser as a previous visitor. This information allows us to customize delivery of information. For example, our Website may use cookies to save and remember registration information or preferences that you may have set while browsing the Website, to keep track of your shopping cart, to ensure you don’t see the same ad content repeatedly, to deliver content specific to your interests, and to save your password so you do not have to re-enter it each time you visit our site. We use cookies only to gather information as indicated in this policy.

7.2 In addition, on occasion our site may also set a “session cookie” which helps us administer the Website. The session cookie expires when you close your browser and does not retain any information about you after it expires.

7.3 Finally, we may also use an ad network provider to help present advertisements on this and other Cosgrove Meurer Productions, Inc. websites. This ad network provider, like other advertising service vendors, uses cookies, web beacons, or similar technologies on the hard drive of your computer to serve you advertisements tailored to interests you have shown by browsing on this and other sites you have visited, and to determine whether you have seen a particular advertisement before and to avoid sending you duplicate advertisements. In doing so, the provider collects non-personal data such as your browser type, your operating system, web pages visited, time of visits, content viewed, ads viewed, and other clickstream data. The use of cookies, web beacons, or similar technologies by these ad network providers is subject to their own privacy policies, not ours, and Cosgrove Meurer Productions, Inc. assumes no responsibility for the collection or use of such information.

ARTICLE 8. Banner Advertising
8.1 We have contracted with an ad-service to place banner advertising on our Website. All of the data provided and generated by the ad-server software remains in our possession. This feature of our Website may, on occasion, set “cookies” on your computer. Any information collected or stored by the ad-service or the cookies is treated in the same manner as other information described in this statement.

ARTICLE 9. Children’s Personal Information
9.1 Consistent with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act:

9.1.1 This site does NOT collect, use, or disclose personal information (including online contact information) of children under the age of thirteen (13).

9.1.2 In the event that a child under the age of 13 attempts to register on our site, we will NOT accept the registration and will delete information received from the child.

9.1.3 In the event that a child posts personal information in a public forum such as a chat room, we will attempt to delete that information once we become aware of it.

ARTICLE 10. Security of Your Personal Information
10.1 Cosgrove Meurer Productions, Inc. employs reasonable security measures consistent with standard industry practice, for information collected through this Website. We believe that we have adequate security measures in place in our physical facilities to protect against the loss, misuse, or alteration of the information we collect on our Website. We also use internal protections to limit access to users’ personal information to only those employees who need the information to perform a specific job.

ARTICLE 11. Sale or Merger
11.1 If this Website is sold to, or merges with, another company not owned by Cosgrove Meurer Productions, Inc., you should expect that some or all of the information collected from this Website may be transferred to the buyer/surviving company. If so, CMP will seek to obligate the acquiring company to use any personal information transferred by this Website in a manner consistent with this statement, but cannot guarantee that it will be able to impose that requirement or that the acquiring company will comply.

ARTICLE 12. Legal Process
12.1 You should be aware that Cosgrove Meurer Productions, Inc. may be required to disclose your personal information to the government or third parties under certain circumstances, such as in court or regulatory proceedings.

ARTICLE 13.  Contacting the Website

13.1        If you have any questions about this Privacy Statement, the practices of this Website, or your dealings with this Website, please contact us at: unsolved@unsolved.com.

ARTICLE 14.  general information

14.1        Choice of Law:  This Agreement and the Additional Terms shall be governed by, construed and enforced in accordance with the laws of the State of California , as it is applied to agreements entered into and to be performed entirely within such state, without regard to conflict of law principles.

14.2        Choice of Forum:  You agree that any cause of action you or Cosgrove Meurer Productions, Inc. brings to enforce this Agreement and/or the Additional Terms, or in connection with any matters related to this Website and/or the Privacy Statement, shall be submitted to arbitration in the County of Los Angeles, State of California, United States of America in accordance with the commercial rules and regulations of the American Arbitration Association then in effect (as amended herein), provided that said arbitration shall be heard before a single arbitrator, who shall be a retired judge, selected pursuant to such rules and regulations, and shall be conducted on an expedited basis and in confidence. The arbitrator’s decision shall be controlled by the terms and conditions of this agreement and any other agreements I may enter into with you, and shall be final and binding, and shall provide for each party to bear its own costs of arbitration and attorneys’ fees.  Each party expressly waives any right to a jury.  Judgment upon the award of the arbitrator may be entered or enforced in any court of competent jurisdiction. 

14.4        If any provision of this Agreement, or the application thereof to any person or circumstances, is held invalid or for any reason unenforceable then such provision shall be deemed superseded by a valid, enforceable provision that matches, as closely as possible, the original provision, and the other provisions of this Agreement shall remain in full force and effect.  The failure of either party to insist upon strict performance of any provision of this Agreement shall not be construed as a waiver of any provision or right.  Unless expressly provided otherwise, this Agreement is the entire agreement between you and Cosgrove Meurer Productions, Inc. with respect to the use of this Website and shall not be modified except in writing, signed by an authorized representative of Cosgrove Meurer Productions, Inc.

ARTICLE 15.  European Union and Other Foreign Nations

15.1        This Website is governed by and operated in accordance with the laws of United States of America and is intended for enjoyment of residents of the United States.  Cosgrove Meurer Productions, Inc. makes no representation that this Website is governed by or operated in accordance with the laws of other nations.  By using this Website and submitting any personal information, visitors from outside of the United States acknowledge this Website is subject to U.S. law, consent to the transfer of personal data to the U.S., and waive any claims that may arise under their own national laws.