Ghosts of Gettysburg

I’ve neglected this blog through August but have good reason. I’ve been vacationing. 🙂

My family had much to celebrate this summer. My fifteen year old graduated high school and was about to celebrate her Sweet 16. As a combination gift, as opposed to a party, she asked to visit the Harry Potter attraction at Universal Studios in Florida and to go ghost-hunting in Gettysburg. We did both (and more) and had a phenomenal time. So phenomenal, that I couldn’t bring myself to break up the action by posting here. My bad… but oh so good. 😆

I’d love to share all the details of Disney’s Magic Kingdom and Universal’s Harry Potter, and maybe I will. Eventually. But our trip to Gettysburg was so incredible I must share that first.

We arrived in the Historic area of Gettysburg around 4pm on Monday August 29th and we left on Thursday, September 1st, around 1pm. In that short time, we had one spirit experience after another. Some of our experiences were physical – feeling pressure, like being submerged. Feeling intense fear or complete peace. Feeling cold – freezing cold. And even feeling as though we’d walked through spider webs. None of that can be proven. Each event was a personal experience we will always remember but cannot document.

However… we have photographs and voice recordings that prove, to me at least, that what we saw, heard and felt was indeed something from another realm.

Wednesday was our biggest day, the day with the most activity. It started in the early evening when we visited an area of the Dobbin House that had been part of the Underground Railroad.

As we climbed the dark, narrow stairs to the attic, we saw a cupboard cut into the wall which once held pottery and stoneware. Behind that cupboard, in the attic crawl space – no higher than four feet, no wider than 20 and with no windows – runaway slaves were hidden. We walked up a few more stairs and entered the main attic – with 8-foot ceilings, windows… and another door. To another level. I opened that door to peer in and immediately jumped back in fear. I cannot tell you why. I didn’t see anything and I didn’t hear anything. I simply felt an unbearable dread that left me wanting to crumble to my knees and sob.

It took all my strength and resolve to go back to that door and slip my digital recorder into the opening. I felt a strong cool breeze on my hand, but heard nothing until I played back the recording. I am convinced the breeze was simply an attic breeze and nothing more. However, I cannot explain the voices captured on my recorder.

Listen for yourself… there is talking that can be explained. I was with my daughter and a friend. It is their voices you hear ‘mumbling’ in the background. But listen closer. At 14 seconds in, see if you can hear a whimper/cry of fear. Then at 21 seconds, listen carefully for a child’s voice “I don’t like this.” and another child’s voice picking up on the ‘s’ saying, “See it open?”, immediately after that, at 24 seconds, is the whimper/cry again. THAT was not from us.

And yes, the voice at 3 seconds saying, “I can do this. I can’t do this. Alright, I can do this.” is Gemini me working up the nerve to open the attic door again. 🙂

Dobbin House

After we left the Dobbin House, we went back to finish an auto tour of the battlefield that we had started the day before. It was nearly 5pm when we reached Culp’s Hill. A short trek into the woods gave each of us a feeling of being watched. It wasn’t a good feeling. I didn’t feel it as strongly as the others. At first. Then suddenly, I couldn’t get out of their fast enough. At one point, before I high-tailed it out of there, my daughter, who had walked ahead of us, started heading back toward us. I knew she was behind me but heard footsteps coming from somewhere on my right. We were in the woods. Could be rabbits, chipmunks, snakes or any other animal. I shrugged it off. THEN, from the same spot, I heard what sounded like the hammer of a rifle being pulled back. It wasn’t loud but I heard it. On playback, that sound is right against the recorder – which was in my hand. A few seconds after that, before I acknowledge hearing the sound, my daughter starts to speak and a ‘voice’ says, “whisper”. We did not hear that voice until playback later that night.

It’s all in this recording – “rifle hammer” at 10 seconds and “whisper” at 18 seconds – see if you can hear it:

Culp’s Hill – Gun and Voice

We spent about an hour at Culp’s Hill and moved on to the next Battlefield location – The Wheatfield. The Wheatfield was the scene of a horrific battle – not that all battles aren’t horrific. It is said that more than 4,000 men died in the Wheatfield and that if a person wanted to cross the field, they could walk across without their feet ever touching the ground. That’s how many bodies of men and horses covered the area. Heartbreaking.

We had an experience at the Wheatfields that we cannot prove – though I haven’t listened to all of the recordings yet and there are still more photos to look through. However, my daughter went to one area as if drawn to it, and set out all of her equipment – Camera, EVP Device, EMF Meter, Ambient Temperature gauge – and then she stood up, moving back and to her left. Only thing is, as she moved, she raised her right foot as if stepping back and over something. We asked why she did that and she said she didn’t know. I took her temperature gauge and did some readings. The air around us was about 80 degrees. The air in the spot she stepped over was 25.

We spent a solid amount of time in the Wheatfield then moved on to the next stop – the site of Picket’s Charge. As we listened to the audio CD for the auto tour, I gazed out at the sky. The sun was setting and it looked beautiful. I took a couple of pictures then noticed a sliver of moon to my left. As I was about to photograph it, I saw movement in the brush. Like someone popping their head up to get a quick look around. That scared the begeebers out of me but I quickly aimed my camera and fired off two shots. One of them, to my eyes anyway, shows a group of Union Officers having a pow-wow. Can you see them?

Gettysburg Ghosts - Soldiers in field

How about now…

Gettysburg Ghosts - Soldiers in field closeup

We left the battlefield soon after this because once the sun set, it was too easy to lose our way along the unlit paths.

We had several more experiences that night but if I write about all of them here, this post will go on for pages. For now, I’ll leave you with a few more photographs and a promise to post more about our experiences next time.

Can you see the soldier walking along the path – straight toward the camera? Or the soldier kneeling in the left hand bushes?

soldier on path

See them now?

Soldier on path and kneeling in bushes on left

You’d have to look REALLY hard to see the ghostly images in this picture. Trust me, I know, because I did just that. I saw not only a couple of soldiers walking, but one in the woods (possibly) and a closer image – in color no less – of a Union soldier’s face. They’re all boxed so you can find them easily:

Face on left and ghosts right of three people on rocks - indicated

And one more for today and that’s it, I promise:

Debora Dale

No. No ghosts in that last one. Just me playing dress-up. 🙂

33 Responses to Ghosts of Gettysburg

  • So glad you had a good time, Debora. I was in Gettysburg last year at this time and also found it amazing, and incredibly moving. I stayed at a B&B that once was a field hospital during the Civil War. It is touted to be on of the most haunted B&B in the U.S.

    While lying in bed, I caught a movement out of the corner of my eye. When I looked at the french doors leading out to a patio, I saw the outline of a shadowy figure by the door looking in. It disappeared when I looked full on and asked my husband, “Did you see that?” To which he answered in true man fashion, “See what?”

    • lol! If he doesn’t admit to seeing it, then it simply is NOT there. 🙂

      It’s so cool to have those experiences, but also quite terrifying. I commend you for actually staying in a B&B with the reputation of being haunted. I’ll tell you about our accommodations next time. 😉

  • What a wonderful trip! I’m so glad y’all had such a great time. I haven’t been to Gettysburg but it’s now on my places to go. I love to go ghost hunting. 🙂

    • It’s a definite if you love ghost hunting! Have you been ghost hunting? Have you captured any images or voices, or had personal experiences? I’d love to hear about them if you have.

  • Wow! Seems like you had quite a scary experience. I could hear some of the things you noted, others were more difficult. In the pictures I’ll have to look more closely to see what you saw. Eery…
    Patti

    • You really have to listen hard. It’s easier with good headphones. I know while I listened through the computer, I missed a lot. Once I put on headphones, the voices were just ‘there’. Scary.

      I’ll try to outline the images so you can see them better. Sometimes, just a tilt of the screen brings the image into view.

  • Iheard and saw everything you documented except the soldiers in the last boxed photo. Fascinating! remind me to tell you my ghost story some time. Made a beliver out of this sceptic for sure:-)

    Pam

    • Yeah!! I’m glad you heard and saw them. I had to strain to hear some of the sounds and voices and chose these because they seemed easier to note. I’ll try to outline the soldiers in the image so you can see it better.

      I want to hear your ghost story!! I wasn’t exactly a skeptic, but I was a cautious about what I thought I was seeing and hearing… until… well… more stories to come in another post. 😉

  • What a great experience! Unfortunately, I’m too much of a believer that I avoid places like these. I’d be too chicken to come across an unhappy spirit or bring one back home with me. But I love your audio/video use throughout the post. You have to show me how you do it one day. 🙂

    • The audio/video use worked after several failed attempts. But I’ll show you what I finally learned. 😀

      As for bringing a spirit back with you, there are ways to avoid that. Mostly. :-/ Basically, you tell them in no uncertain terms not to follow you or attach themselves to you or your possessions. I don’t know if that really works, but we did it several times and, honestly, the odd feelings we had disappeared. In my next post, I’ll tell the story about the apple scent… and our wish to not be followed. 😉

  • Very cool recordings! I’m scared! 🙂

    • lol! Don’t be scared, Dawn! 🙂 I have to be honest – each time I thought I was afraid, something else happened that let me know what real fear was. Trust me. The little I posted here was nothing!

  • Deb- A friend sent me your link. Love the photos. I too, have been to Gettysburg and have had similar experiences. It’s such an awesome site to explore. Can’t wait to go back. Thank you for posting it.
    Debbie

    • You’re VERY welcome, Debbie, I’m glad the link was passed on to you! I’d LOVE to know more about your experience in Gettysburg. Have you blogged about it or posted anything about it somewhere? If so, send me the link and I’ll head right there!

  • Amazing, Debbie. Thank you so much for sharing this. I mentioned to you about my daughter and her friends being into ghost hunting and I can’t wait to share this with them. Looking forward to hearing more, you brave soul, you.

    • Hi Lynne!

      I’d love to know what your daughter and her friend think about this. It was as thrilling as it was intimidating. Most of what I took out of it was how it made me feel – physically and emotionally. At first, I thought I felt things but when I REALLY did, I knew it. There was no questioning. The energy – assuming that’s what a spirit is – was so powerful, it gripped all three of us at basically the same time. No denying it. Of course, we can’t prove that to anyone, but we had each other to validate our experiences and that will have to suffice.

  • Thanks Debbie. I’ve never been to Gettysburg but if I ever do I’ll definitely take that tour. It sounds fantastic. Some nice fodder for a story, eh?

    • Definitely fodder for a story!

      If you do go to Gettysburg, take the auto tour (you drive yourself following the directions of a tour guide on CD) but also have lunch or dinner at the Dobbin House AND the Farnsworth house. At the Farnsworth House, be sure to order spoon bread and pumpkin fritters! YUM! (Don’t order the salted ham or game pie, though. Too authentic to the period for my taste).

  • Debbie, I am sorry it took me so long to get over here. I also owe you an email. 😀

    This was a great blog post. I knew I’d enjoy it and want to watch and listen to everything. So I did the logical thing…I put off visiting.

    It sounds like you guys had a great time in Gettysburg. I’ve not been for years. My great-grandmother lived in West Virginia, and we visited Gettysburg on a day trip when I was probably less then 10 years old. This was before the paranormal thing got so popular, so there were not mentions of “this place is haunted and this one is not.”

    You’ve made me want to visit again. Next time y’all do this you’ll have to come a bit farther south. Visit The Myrtles in St. Francisville, Louisiana (you tube it to see what I mean). From there, you can drive to San Antonio and visit the Menger Hotel and the Alamo. I might meet y’all for a plate of fajitas on the river walk.

    Glad your back in town. 😀

    • I will definitely have to take you up on your suggestion/invitation. You make it sound wonderful!!

      I’d been to Gettysburg many times in the past – several times when I was a kid and several times in my adult life. We mainly go back for the pumpkin fritters and spoon bread at the Farnsworth House. 🙂 I blogged about my last trip there a while ago and will post a link to that in my next Ghosts of Gettysburg post.

      Thing is, when my husband and I went there together for the first time, we were out late in the evening and the town was all but closed up. It seemed only those on ghost tours were out. The evening was perfect – warm with a slight breeze. We strolled through town, really looking at the civil war era buildings and then got in the car to head back to our B&B.

      Well.

      At few silent blocks into our ride, we looked at each other and read each other’s thoughts. My husband pulled over and we got out of the car, leaving all the doors open. Hoping, without saying a word that whatever/whoever might have hitched a ride with us had gotten out.

      We felt better after that and the rest of our trip was uneventful – ghost-wise – but that moment is etched in my mind and I just wonder what I might have captured at that moment if I’d had the ‘ghost hunting equipment’ available now.

      If you go – go ready, go open-minded and go with the confidence to demand those ghosts NOT attach themselves to you or your possessions.

      Seriously.

      • What an interesting experience! I’ve never had anything like that happen. I wonder if the ghost was a more modern ghost who just thought he was hitching a ride. Or if he or she just liked the look of you two. Again, very cool post. Right up my alley, you know. 😀

  • Wow, Debbie! What a trip, in all senses of the word. ; ) That is so cool that you had those experiences, and scary. I am going to share your blog with my daughter who loves ghost hunting, too. I love those pictures–wow! Can’t wait to hear more.

    • Liz, the experiences were definitely cool. What amazes me now when I think back is how relatively calm we were through most of it. Our last night there was incredible – I will post about that at another time – and we had difficulty sleeping because of it. BUT… we never truly felt as though we were in danger. We simply felt the presence of others – and sadness, as if we felt what they were feeling. I don’t know. It’s very hard to explain but we felt safe. My next post will detail much of that and though it will take a while to write, I think it will be worth it. So… stand by… 🙂

  • Thanks for sharing your experiences and pictures and after reading your comment to Liz, I want to know more! That town can’t help but have ghosts.

    • Jeannie, I agree that town has to have ghosts! I think what we experienced was mainly ‘residual’ hauntings – energy trapped in a bubble, of sorts, that keeps replaying itself. Like when an image is frozen on the TV for too long and remains after you turn the TV off. The trauma of events from those battles had to have been etched into time, trapped and destined to repeat itself. Some of the ‘answers’ we captured on tape, however, do seem to be in direct response to our questions. I’m not sure what to make of it all but know it was as exciting as it was sad.

  • Loved reading about your experiences here! Haven’t been able to pull up the recording yet, despite my eagerness to listen.

    I did visit a battlefield once and entered one of the few remaining houses in the area. When I stepped inside, I felt that same sense of pressure–never knew anyone describing it as well. Another woman with my group had an intense reaction, very fearful and she bolted immediately. For me though, it didn’t feel scary, just intense. Pressure and a hint of movement, like when you’re in an elevator. I’d love to visit Gettysburg now!!

    Thanks for a very interesting read!! Look forward to Part 2, which is where I’m headed now. 🙂

    • Chiron! Thanks for coming by my blog! I hope when you listen to the recordings, you can hear what we heard – and I hope you can see the images in the photos. They’re not that easy to detect.

      I’m intrigued by your experiences and those of the people with you. Where was this battlefield? We may want to visit that one next. 🙂

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