The Paranormal at Sachs Bridge
Gettysburg will forever be associated with one of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War. Three days in July that changed not only the landscape of the war but permanently changed the direction of a nation. One of the places closely associated with this battle is a 100 foot long covered bridge called Sachs Bridge and now the paranormal activity there makes it one of the most haunted places in America.
The bridge was originally built in 1854 by David Spooner in spans the Marsh Creek. It is built with a truce and lattice support system and it not only survived the battle, it also survived a flood in 1996 that washed it nearly 100 yards downstream. With a combination of the citizens of Gettysburg and local government, the bridge was not only restored but they were able to save almost 90% of the original truss and lattice design as well as raise it 3 feet to help prevent a re-occurrence during high waters.
Both the Union and Confederates used this bridge but after day 2 of the battle it stayed on the Confederate side until their retreat days later. Not unsurprisingly, the highway department determined Sachs Bridge to be the most historic covered bridge in the state, in 1968 the bridge was closed to automobile traffic and in 1980 it was listed on the in the National Register of Historic Places. It is also called by many who have investigated one of the most active paranormal spots in Gettysburg.
During the retreat of the Army of Northern Virginia, Lee was worried of attacks on his battle worn army. He decided to split it up and send some towards Virginia via Cashtown and some by way of Sachs Bridge. Near the bridge was a post battlefield hospital set up and it is this as well as the men left to die along the bridge that lay claim to the paranormal pictures and experiences here.
Visitors have claimed to feel a heavy sadness when at the bridge as well as a strong feeling that they are unwanted there and are always being watched. We happened to visit Sachs Bridge late one evening on the last day of our visit to Gettysburg. I don’t claim to be sensitive or have psychic abilities but there is heaviness in the air there that cannot be denied.
There is a story containing a darker side to the Sachs Bridge as well. The story is of 3 men hung from the rafters there. Some research I have read tell of 3 Confederate soldiers caught as spies and hung, some claim that the three soldiers were deserters and hung and one claims that it was three men caught stealing in the area and hung. The only thing for sure is that these men were hung from the rafters of the bridge and left to die.
Pictures taken from the bridge at night have shown strange orbs and streaking lights in them that were not there to the naked eye. There have been claims of hearing canon and gun fire from the fields around Sachs Bridge as well as apparitions and sounds of running horses. There have also been reports of screams, footsteps coming across the bridge and strange mists. There is also an angry spirit or spirits there, some claim associated with the hanged men, which do not want anyone there.
Though we were not fortunate enough to see the bridge during the day, it seems from pictures to be a beautiful place right out of a story book. At night however, there is something in the air that transforms this bridge into another time. Maybe there are forces present that would rather be left alone, I don’t know, but next time you are their pay a visit to Sachs Bridge and see for yourself.