Graveyard Shift

Creepy Civil War Legends and Ghost Stories  

Stephen Tompkins
2.9k votes 905 voters 71k views 10 items

List Rules Vote up the most frightful Civil War story

It's safe to say that any of the soldiers who fought in the American Civil war are long gone. Or at least, they are long gone from this world, but who's to say that they're gone altogether? Ghost stories of the Civil War certainly abound and it's no wonder, because they're equal parts creepy and fascinating - yet somehow, we still don't know them all.

We all know about the Battle of Gettysburg, but what we may not know is that the soldiers who lost their lives there continue to aimlessly roam the field to this day. Or that there are ghost soldiers directing tourists.

If you're not familiar with Civil War ghost stories, then perhaps you should read the following accounts, because there's lots to learn. So go on, and read these creepy Civil War stories that are sure to scare you...
Dangerfield Newby
Dangerfield Newby is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Creepy Civil War Legends and Ghost Stories
Photo: Unknown/Wikipedia/Public Domain

The eldest of John Brown's raiders of Harper's Ferry, Dangerfield Newby was the first person to die in the raid, which took place just before the Civil War. Newby was struck in the throat by a six-inch spike, fired by a man protecting the Ferry, and was subsequently killed. Newby was then mutilated by the people and left to be eaten by hogs in an alley. 

Newby's apparition is said to haunt Harper's Ferry, and can be seen aimlessly wandering the town's streets. The apparition is noted for having a large gash in the throat, where Newby was struck by the spike and also known for wearing slouched hat and baggy trousers.
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The Devil's Den
The Devil's Den is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Creepy Civil War Legends and Ghost Stories
Photo:  Wilson44691/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain

Perhaps the most notoriously haunted battlefield of the American Civil War is Gettysburg, and there is certainly no shortage of ghost stories surrounding the bloodiest battle ever fought on American soil. Sitting on the location of the battlefield of the second day of Gettysburg itself is an ominous heap of craggy rocks better known to the public as the Devil's Den.

Many tourists have claimed to see the apparition of a bare-footed man wearing a floppy hat and bright shirt, which fits the description of a group of Texans who participated in the Battle of Gettysburg. Tourists claim the apparition says to them "What you're looking for is over there," before vanishing into thin air. 
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St. Peter's Catholic Church
St. Peter's Catholic Church is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Creepy Civil War Legends and Ghost Stories
Photo:  Joy Schoenberger/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY 3.0

Harper's Ferry in West Virginia is known to locals and tourists alike, as one of the most haunted places from the American Civil War. Sitting in Harper's Ferry is St. Peter's Catholic Church, a church which operated as a hospital for the wounded during the Civil War. 

The legend states that a soldier who was wounded in battle came to St. Peter's church seeking medical assistance. Written off with non-life threatening injuries, the man was forced to wait outside while other more severe wounds were attended to.  However, his wounds were more severe than originally anticipated, and while being carried back into the church he said "Thank God, I'm saved,"  just before dying. 

The man is said to haunt the church to this day. Tourists report hearing the man's last words spoken, while outside the building, while others claim to see a glowing aura just outside of the church where the man died.
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Fort Monroe
Fort Monroe is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Creepy Civil War Legends and Ghost Stories
Photo: Alfred Waud/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain

Said to be haunted by the former Confederate President himself, among many others, Fort Monroe is one of few southern forts that remained uncaptured during the war, until it fell to the Union after the war's end. The fort was said to be a mighty fortress, which boasted sturdy walls and even a moat. 

Jefferson Davis was captured and held prisoner at Fort Monroe and is said to haunt the cell where he was kept. Even creepier, his wife is said to haunt the premises, aimlessly wandering the grounds of the fort, in search of her long-lost husband. 

However, the most well-known of the premise's ghosts is a woman who haunts the portion of the fort known as Ghost Alley. Though no one knows exactly who she is, she is said to wander around the alley, surrounded by a mysterious glowing fog. 
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