Gettysburg II (Day 1)

Gettysburg II (Day 1)

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Gettysburg II trip Day 1:
For months Henry and I have been planning a trip to go out to Gettysburg to visit Pat and Doug of the Ghost Soldiers Radio show. Henry went in September of last year (also known as Gettysburg I) and had a blast. He did the radio show from the haunted Mr. G’s Ice Cream parlor in old Gettysburg, and visited the battlefields with Pat, Doug and Craig. Craig was not able to participate this year though.
Early in the morning of April 23rd, Henry and I packed up his car and started on the eight hour drive towards the old battlefield. We would our way through southern Ohio, watching as the topography slowly transformed from the flat farmlands of the western side into the rolling grassland of eastern Ohio.  We cross the mighty Ohio River into West Virginia, climbed through Appalachia in southern Pennsylvania, and winded our way through Maryland along the Potomac River. In that eight hour car ride we watched America’s landscape change.
We were driving on Route 30 (which I have discovered is nicknamed Pennsylvania’s haunted highway) when we passed by Caledonia State Park, looking out the window into the state park I glimpsed my first group of Civil War soldiers, a group of Union troops marching through the pine forest there.
“Great,” I thought as we whizzed past them in the car “this weekend is going to be a packed one.”
It’s no secret now, but through the years I have hinted on the Paranormal View Radio Show that I seem to be a little extra sensitive in the paranormal department. I have seen ghosts since I was a little girl growing up in northern Indiana. What got me looking into the paranormal was me searching for an answer as to who I am seeing and why. 20+ years later, I am still searching but now have some better explanations. My abilities to see the dead (which I guess you can say, mediumship) have come and gone, but recently they have started ramping up again in my late 20s. Generally around Cincinnati, I don’t run into many ghosts or spirits, but Gettysburg was overwhelming!
Henry and I check into our hotel, the Quality Inn Gettysburg Battlefield on Steinwehr Ave.  It is about 4PM and all is calm. With a few hours to kill before dinner time, we decided to go to the battlefield, and started at the John Snyder Farm area. Henry droves us around, and parked in a wooded area next to a field with boulders randomly strewn around. We got out, and as we walked onto the hiking trail I saw them, soldiers darting behind the boulders wearing  dark blue uniform jackets,  lighter blue or gray pants with forage caps (I had to look up the hat) and carrying their rifles. A monument sitting in the field explained who they were to me- members of the 1st Regiment Vermont Calvary. These were young men, in their late teens and early 20s who were very curious as to whom we were.

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The Snyder Farm
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Field around Snyder Farm. Those aren’t “orbs” in the photo, just lens flare.
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Monument for the 1st Regiment Vermont Cavalry in the field.

 

 

We walked down to the Snyder Farm, which lays between the Warfield and Devil’s Den. As we walked down toward the farm we were being followed by four of these men, but as soon as we walked across Plum Creek, they were gone. On our way back from the farm I glimpsed the light gray hat of, what I later found out to be, a Confederate officer.  What I noticed was his light gray Slouch Hat peeking from behind a large tree, I pointed him out to Henry, but he disappeared into the forest.
We drove up to Little Round Top to be greeted by two things; first a school field trip and all the students involved, and second, our friend and fellow paranormal author, Cat Gasch.  There was so many people up on Little Round Top that if there were any spirits there, they didn’t make themselves known. I’m not surprised though, ghosts and spirits tend to favor smaller group of the living.
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From Little Round Top we drove down to Devil’s Den, thankfully the field trip kids didn’t stop by. For a short while, we were the only ones there until a young family arrived. The air around Devil’s Den is like none around the battlefields. It has a weird energy or vibe to it, even in bright sunlight on a clear day like that one. When I walked up to Devil’s Den, I got the sweet stench of decay for a moment. At one part of the den I could see Union soldiers with rifles firing at Confederate soldiers making their way downhill to Little Round Top. Walking along the crevices of Devil’s Den, and across the little bridge on top, I could see the dead stuffed into those gaps. One man, a dark blonde with dead blue eyes stared up from one of those gaps to the sky. It was awful.  Cat, who is also a sensitive, had the same reaction. The thing that disturbed me the most was when we went by later that day, a Boy Scout troop was playing around on the rocks of Devil’s Den and crawling into those gaps. I could see the boys walking on top of those corpses, the dead men’s hands and chests moving up and down with the weight of the boys walking on top of them. The sight was disgusting, I had to leave.
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Cat showed me the Triangular Field, just a little west of Devil’s Den. There was a lot of sadness here, but quiet. She talked about her previous visits and experiences friends had while jogging the battlefield ( a surprisingly common thing to do!) A young couple passed us and walked down into the field (we were standing at the stone wall). We talked while watching the couple move through the field towards the western edge of it, when we noticed a Confederate soldier ducking out of view behind a boulder as the couple approached him. The couple never reacted, as if they didn’t see him! Cat and I had though.
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We also visited Spangler Spring and Culp's Hill, but didn't pick up on anything. 

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Cat, Henry, and I then made it over to Cemetery Hill and the Soldier's National Monument in the Gettysburg National Cemetery. 

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After that, Cat picked up Mike the "Paranormal Man" Stevenson to visit Sachs Bridge, a notoriously haunted bridge just outside the battlefields. It is okay to visit during the day, but apparently the Gettysburg Police really do heavily patrol it at night so it isn't smart to visit after dusk. 

Naturally, because it is such a notorious paranormal hot spot, there were a lot of sightseers and legend trippers hanging around so it was difficult to do any EVP recording. There was even a family fishing the Marsh Creek below the bridge! 
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Our evening wasn’t over; it was time to meet Pat at Willoughby Run. Willoughby Run is a part of the field that many visitors do not go to since it requires you to get out of the car and hike a little ways. However, it was an important area on the first day of the battle and Pat has collected many EVP from the area. Mike “the Paranormal Man” Stevenson joined us for this portion of the day. We got some good EVP, especially caught by Pat, in response to me saying that I was from the North. Many of the soldiers that died at Willoughby Run were Confederates and I was curious to their reaction if I mentioned where my family was from. The response is loud, nearly screaming, about something. We can’t make out at the moment just what it is saying.
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After our EVP session in Willoughby Run, the entire group headed back to downtown Gettysburg for dinner and to meet up with two Paranormal View listeners, Tina and Karen. They had braved the 10 hour long drive from Indiana to visit Gettysburg! We also met up with Doug, Pat’s radio show co-host for Ghost Soldiers, and a fellow reenactor. While parking the car to go to the pub, we passed by some “painted ladies,” a type of colorfully painted Victorian home. I mentioned it to Henry and said “Oh look, there’s some pretty painted ladies!” His response was priceless, “Where?” He asked, “I don’t see any ladies.” He said this while swiveling his head to- and-fro. Laughing I replied, “They aren’t people, it’s a type of house.”
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By the way, if you are visiting Gettysburg and you want a fun pub to grab a pint, Garry Owens is a good place to go. It has a good old Irish pub feel in a building that was around during the Civil War, plus it is said to be haunted (of course). However, if you feel like actually getting food, look for another place to eat. It was an hour and a half wait time for our party to be seated with an additional 40 minutes for our food to arrive at the table. Doug arrived late to our party, and they closed the kitchen (without warning) before he could order his dinner. We all pitched in and gave him some of our food, but we were disappointed with the service.  We spent four hours in Garry Owens when all was said and done!
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(Left to right) Mike, Doug, and Pat.
 
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(Left to right) Henry, Cat, and Tina.
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Doug and Pat!
Our tales of Gettysburg will be continued in the next article! Gettysburg II, Day two!