Gettysburg Battlefield Ghosts

You can usually count on paranormal activity at places that lost of life was sudden and unexpected. Then there is no wonder that a place where approximately 165,600 soldiers met, nearly 8,000 died (along with close to 3000 horses) plus one known civilian death and all in a three day period would be considered one of the most haunted places in America. July 1 – 3, 1863 this happened all in a little town in Pennsylvania called Gettysburg.

Nearly 4 months after the battle, then President Lincoln dedicated a cemetery to the union soldiers and in his address stated, “The world will little note, nor long remember, what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here.” He was only partially right. The National Park Service took over the battlefield in 1933 and since then has done everything it can to restore the area (6,000 acres) to the conditions of 1863.

Not only has America not forgotten but it seems some of the participants of those horrific three days have not forgotten either. Some died instantly; some were brought to make shift hospitals in the town itself only to die later and some would be unfortunate enough to lay wounded until death found them. It is these instances that make Gettysburg a hot spot for paranormal activity.

Though the hub seems to be the battle field itself and particular a spot called the Devil’s Den, the town is also susceptible to activity. For example, countless dead were brought to the town and in addition to that the amount of animals dead and laying in the field, made the town reek of death. So the town’s people would use lilac water to cover up the smell of death. That smell of lilac is reported to be in the air during ghost sightings.

The Devils Den is an area in the battlefield that is made up of large boulders. Confederate sharpshooters would hide behind the rocks and would shoot as Union troops passed through. The sharpshooters are credited with hundreds of kills before the Union army found them and eliminated the threat. If was after the war however that a war photographer instructed his assistants to move the bodies of the dead soldiers and went as far as dragging one behind the rocks to pose as a sharpshooter to get a good picture.

It is this action that is said to be behind the paranormal activity in this area. Many photographers as well as visitors have had their cameras malfunction in this area, photographs not develop, apparitions in the picture and even backgrounds of the grassy fields in the pictures coming out black.

Other sightings is that of Jennie Wade, the one known civilian casualty. She was killed by a stray bullet while in her home. It has been reported that she wanders around her home where she dies along with her father who had to be institutionalized after her death.

Another paranormal hub is the Farnsworth House. This home was taken over by the confederates on the first day of the battle. It was used to house the Confederate sharpshooters which incidentally it was a sharpshooter that was aid to have accidentally killed Jennie. The Farnsworth house has had many paranormal activities reported. Apparitions, footsteps, smell of cigar smoke, objects moving and actually ghost touches have been reported by guests and employees alike.

Here is a great ghost video from Gettysburg Battlefield:


  • bobby harris

    hi. i wanted to just say here i loved the videos now i can see and understand that its haunted one of the things i didn’t know much about was Gettysburg since i started watching the movie Gettysburg and gods and generals now i finally can say yes it is true i am from North Carolina i know i come from the confederate side which i didn’t know at first and came to realize it. so i am now joining the civil war reenacting and will continue to do so to remember and to honor the civil war soldiers who died there. to their memory as well i plan to visit Gettysburg and will try to see about getting info on the spirits that still are heard and seen there. as i know some people have met face to face with one of the spirit (ghosts) so i am not afraid to do this alone. i am also studying my family genealogy from my native hometown in N.C. and we have a monument to honor our confederate dead. there so i am sure most of my family generation has been in the civil war and will find out who they are and where they are at during the fighting. that will be fun to do as well. by the way keep the great work with these videos there were awesome.

  • Ghost Writer

    Hope you get to Gettysburg real soon! We here at Ghost Eyes are going to do an investigation there this summer and will post what we find!

  • Kristen

    Wow, I just wanted to say that this is one of the better sites I have seen when it comes to facts on why Gettysburg is haunted. The videos are quite impressive as well.

  • Ghost Writer

    Thank You Kirsten!

    Going to Gettysburg at the end of July so hopefully can bring back some more great experiences.

  • Jim Fowle

    Its just a gimmick to draw in tourists. I LIVE in Gettysburg and love ghost hunting, but when ever I do I leave this town to do it. This town would have a serial killer week if they thought they could make a dime on it. So if your looking for ghosts, don’t wastse your time in Gettysburg.

  • Ghost Writer

    I do not doubt that there are some in Gettysburg that may try to take advantage of tourist.

    After being there however I don’t believe it is completely devoid of the paranormal either. We had some experiences and gathered some impressive EVP’s in the park itself.

    My theory is that the tourism and the re-enactments are what contributes to keeping the energy and paranormal activity high. I am not saying I believe all the claims but I have experienced some on my own.

  • Jim Fowle

    Well for the most part its a tourist trap. But thinking about the Sachs covered bridge and Cashtown Inn which I think are honestly haunted. But at Devils den, there is a road/trail that starts at the other side of the rest rooms building by where you can park your car and take a walk down that trail. Now there is 100% something there and I don’t think its anything good. Don’t think its a human spirt but you will pick up its vibes there. Would love to hear that somebody else went and checked it out and get their take on it. I never had such a STRONG sense of being watched, and dread, and evil before in my life or since.

  • Scott Robinson

    I have visited Gettysburg many times just for tours of the battlefield. My first experience with the spirits was about 4 years ago. I attended the basement story telling at the Farnsworth house with a friend of mine. As we sat throught he story I felt a electric charge going up my body until it finally forced me to throw my head back. The girl I was with looked at me and almost screamed. She told me she saw another face when she looked at me. The events that night continued until we ended up at Devil’s Den when I again experienced the (spirit) but this time it left my body. The experience was very exciting for me but scary for my friend. Another experience happened at The Grove. I went out by myself without the tour guides and there was a heat lightning storm going on at the time. I knelt down to get a better look at something near a tree and at that moment there a was a flash of lightning. When I looked up there confederate soldiers standing in front of me. The 3 oldiers were easily identified because I could see their uniforms clear as day. Their eyes were looking down upon me as if I was somewhere I was not supposed to be. They were in front of me for a good 15 to 20 seconds and then they were gone. I left the field pretty quickly at that moment. My experiences are true, but not everyone can see the spirits or should I say want to see the spirits.

  • Lou

    Gettysburg is most certainly haunted. The photos I took this past Sept. 18-20 prove that Civil War Spirits still linger. And, I wasn’t “ghost hunting”, just taking random shots everywhere in broad daylight. No “dead time” or “lights out” necessary, nor are the popular electronic gadgets which are nothing more than props for entertainment value. Have camera, get ghosts.

  • john

    I have been to gettysburg numerous times and i love it there.its like stepping into the past,the people there are so down to earth and they welcome everyone into there town.If you go there be sure to stop and see gary at the gettysburg cigar shop.He has alot of great stories to tell.We go there to escape the city and to enjoy a look at the past.

  • Phil

    I have always wanted to learn more about one of my relatives that died there, he was in the all-German unit called the XI Corps, on the first day of the battle they were north of the city and didn’t know the confederates were even around, suddenly the reb Calvary attacked and drove the 11th back towards the town. My relative was wounded, captured and died on the 2nd day of the battle while a POW of the Confederates.
    Just thought I would share that with everyone.

  • Ghost Writer

    If you would like to post his name or email it to us – We are going back in March and maybe I could find something out for you.

  • Phil

    Thanks Ghostwriter, his (and my)last name is Obenour (forget without looking what his first name was as we had several relatives in the war but the name is pretty unique.. He was a son of Herman Obenauer who was a Hesson solder that switched from fighting for the British to the Colonists. the Americans (because of his accent) wrote his name down as “Harmon Obenour” and we have spelled it this way since!
    Phil Obenour
    Mesa, AZ

  • Ghost Writer

    I found some information in a pdf from here:

    Contact information:
    Archives and Special Collections
    Shadek-Fackenthal Library
    Franklin and Marshall College
    450 College Ave. – P.O. Box 3003
    Lancaster, PA 17604-3003
    717-291-4225 or 717-358-4433
    Fax: 717-291-4160

    You will particularly want to see Box 34 – Folder 9.

  • Phil

    Thanks again Ghostwriter!! I wrote and they said the folder contained the records on my relative Hessian Solider Herman Obenauer/Obenour but he said they could no longer photocopy files so I was welcome to visit the library. I guess I will try to find a relative in the east to take a trip there!
    I knew hew was a Hessian and that he might have switched sides or was captured and became a colonial soldier. Somewhere someone told me there was a deed to some land awarded to Obenauer (signed by the president) for services in Washington’s Army. So this information you gave me may have more on this!
    Thanks again, sorry to hijack the thread on Gettysburg but I guess it all ties in!
    Best regards.

  • Ghost Writer

    Glad it helped out! We were just up that way. Was talking today about another weekend get away later this summer. Will try and let you know when we go maybe we can get it for you.

  • Phil

    That would be very kind of you, wish I could help you as much as you have helped me!!
    By the way, I got mixed up about the XI corps at Gettysburg, the rebel force that my relative was wounded/captured was Confederate Second Corps under command of Richard S. Ewell Infantry.. My relative was in one of the 2 divisions that Howard had moved North of the city… I was mixed up about that because of the famous Stonewall Jackson attack on the XI corps at Chancellorsville. My relative survived that attack only to die later at Gettysburg.
    Thanks again!


    A reliable reenactor (police officer) has told be about a little known trail in Gettysburg where people walking (particularly women) have experienced being pushed off the trail to the point of being knocked down.
    Does anyone have information on this trail (I have since lost contact with the officer)

    Thank you.

  • jullianna clark

    me and my gram have been going to gettysbrug since i was 11 and im 14 now and i know just about everything. and my gram and i are interested in parenormal activity and are going to do it sometime with some of our friends there, we actually live in williamsport PA.which is preety scary (not) so now im so hype of doing this.i have stuff like a vid, camera, phone, emf everything ya need and read fifty million books of gettysbrug and ghosts. and right now im writing a book for our historical society

  • Kilee Gaston

    i just love finding out ifo about ghost and i am acually going on a field trip to gettysburg june 7th cant whait

  • Patty

    I’ve been to Gettysburg many time and almost always have some sort of experience there. While I agree that the ghost walks are for the tourist there are many places that have true happenings. Take Culps Hill for example. I have witnessed first hand mist rising in the road on a clear night and disapearing almost as fast as it came. I’ve heard gunfire, my daughter witness a huge orb outside our cabin door and I have photos that can not be explained. I highly recommend anyone who wants to experiece something to visit this town.

  • ryan

    You are wrong about one thing, the photographer did not wait till after the war to drag the body, gettysburg was in 1863, the war ended in 1865, so the body would of been decomposed, i am referring to the famous devils den sniper photo, the body was most likely moved within a week or even a few days after he was killed.

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