The headline of The National News reports on the shooting of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln in Washington on April 14, 1865.Library of Congress / Reuter.
The American Civil War was fought between April 12, 1861 to April 9, 1865. Throughout this four-year period of warfare, battles were decided between the Union and Confederate Armies. By the 1860s, it's no surprise these were some of the largest battles ever contested- and that's in terms of military size, as well as causalities. Following this series of battles between the northern, and southern United States; locations such as Gettysburg are said to be among the most haunted places in America. In terms of how many people lost their lives, a generally accepted number is around 620,000.
Ghosts of the Civil War:
Although it's an unfortunate reality, warfare and conflict have existed since the beginning of human civilization. For instance, there are examples of what could be considered "battle strategy" that dates back to Paleolithic times. These battles were not necessarily "strategic", however, they did involve disputes over things such as food sources and territory.
Something to consider is that soldiers during the Civil War actually got breaks. In ancient times, battles were steady and consistent efforts, and would often last just a few days. However, with larger armies this also meant there were moments of "cease fire", and times to rest.
The above illustration is by Winslow Homer.
Harpers Ferry, West Virginia:
This settlement has existed since the days of the Civil War, and is considered one of the most haunted places from that era.
Story by VOA News.
Tourists love this idea, of the place being haunted. Locals of Harpers Ferry prosper from it, as well. Now, to be more specific, we are talking about St. Peter's Catholic Church. According to legend, a soldier who was wounded (mortally, of course) came to the church seeking medical assistance. His injuries were not initially viewed as "life-threatening", so the soldier was forced to wait outside while others were looked after. Not surprisingly, his wounds were more serious than anticipated. According to those present at the time, this soldier uttered the words "Thank God, I'm saved..." just before he passed away.
"Harpers Ferry Ghost Story Tour, 1995."
So, there are a few things going on here: first of all, it's evident religion has always been a driving force in warfare. Also, the causalities of the Civil War were so severe, places such as churches were being used as medical facilities.
In terms of the haunting itself, it's said the fallen soldier continues to haunt St. Peter's Catholic Church. Tourists have reported hearing the man's final words when standing outside the church, as well as sightings of a glowing aura.
Fort Jackson, Savannah, Georgia.
Although serving in the military has its anxieties, soldiers are expected to honour and respect those around them. However, sometimes fights break out between soldiers of the same side. Despite the fact details of the events that transpired at Fort Jackson are unclear, readers and historians get a glimpse of what soldiers might have experienced. Patrick Garrity was a private in the Confederate Army, and allegedly attempted to murder his superior officer, Lieutenant George Dickinson. This was a random act of violence, because no one is sure why Garrity would do this. Despite having his skull broken in four places, Dickinson survived the attack. Garrity attempted to escape his charges, but ended up drowning the moat that surrounded the fort.
(c) Visit Savannah. Although this is staged, it's an interesting video.
According to legend, it's said the apparition of Private Garrity appears at various locations around Fort Jackson. Furthermore, there have also been sightings of the apparition of a torso of a Confederate solider approaching the famous fort.
Read more here:
Thanks for reading, and be sure to check out PART TWO when it becomes available!
The Modernist Son, 2020-2022