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Antietam Battlefield

Antietam Battlefield paranormal

Location submitted by: sdonley on 07/30/2017
DBA Approved: Y

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PANICd#: 1888

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23,000 soldiers were killed, wounded or missing after twelve hours of savage combat on September 17, 1862.

5831 Dunker Church Rd
Sharpsburg , MD 21782
Phone: (301) 432-5124
Open to the public: Yes

Lat: 39.47419259999999
Lon: -77.74452600000001

Database Summary:

Demographic Rank: 6
History: 1
Stories: 1
Claims: 3
Evidence: 1
Resources: 2
Retrievals: 9186
Vistor Rating: 0.0
Votes: 0

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History information is some background and history about the location. This is meant to be a basic summary. Below the history records you will find sources in which you can click on to find out more information. There may be multiple history records per location.

In the Battle of Antietam, General Robert E. Lee's first invasion of the North ended on this battlefield in 1862. Established as Antietam National Battlefield Site August 30, 1890, the park was transferred from the War Department August 10, 1933, and re-designated November 10, 1978. Along with all historic areas administered by the National Park Service, the battlefield was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 15, 1966. Additional documentation on the site was recorded by the National Park Service on February 27, 2009

Morning phase

The Battle began at dawn on September 17, 1862, when Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker began the Union artillery bombardment of the Confederate positions of Maj. Gen. Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson in the Miller cornfield. Hooker's troops advanced behind the falling shells and drove the Confederates from their positions. Around 7 a.m. Jackson reinforced his troops and pushed the Union troops back. Union Maj. Gen. Joseph K. Mansfield sent his men into the fray and regained some of the ground lost to the Confederates.

Midday phase

As the fighting in the cornfield was coming to a close, Maj. Gen. William H. French was moving his Federals forward to support Maj. Gen. John Sedgwick and veered into Confederate Maj. Gen. D.H. Hill's troops posted in the Sunken Road. Fierce fighting continued here for four hours before the Union troops finally took the road.

Afternoon phase

On the southeast side of town, Union Maj. Gen. Ambrose E. Burnside's XI Corps had been trying to cross Antietam Creek since mid-morning, being held up by only 500 Georgia sharpshooters. Around 1 p.m., they finally crossed Burnside's Bridge and took the heights. After a 2-hour lull to reform the Union lines, they advanced up the hill, driving the Confederates back towards Sharpsburg. But for the timely arrival of Maj. Gen. A.P. Hill's division from Harpers Ferry, Burnside would have entered Sharpsburg. Instead, the Union troops were driven back to the heights above the bridge.


The battle was over with the Union sitting on three sides, waiting for the next day. During the night of the 18th, General Lee pulled his troops back across the Potomac River, leaving the battle and the town to General McClellan.

Added by: sdonley on 07/31/2017 DB#:310


Stories are just that. Stories and personal accounts that have been reported about the location.

Over the years, the sunken road called Bloody Lane has become known as one of the most eerie places on the battlefield. Strange things have taken place here which lead many to believe that events of the past are still being replayed today. Reports over the years tell of the sounds of phantom gunfire echoing along the sunken road and the smell of smoke and gunpowder which seems to come from nowhere. I spoke to a man who visited the battlefield a few years ago and he told me of seeing several men in Confederate uniforms walking down the old road. He assumed they were re-enactors, present at the park for some upcoming event until they abruptly vanished. And ghostly apparitions are not the only things experienced here.

Perhaps the most famous story of the sunken road involves a group of boys from the McDonna school in Baltimore. They toured the battlefield and ended the day at Bloody Lane. The boys were allowed to wander about and think about what they had learned that day. They were asked to record their impressions for a history assignment and some wrote brief remarks and poems. But the comments that got the most attention from the teacher were written by several boys who walked down the road to the observation tower, which is located where the Irish Brigade charged the Confederate line. The boys described hearing strange noises that became shouts, coming from the field near the tower. Some of them said that it sounded like a chant and others described the voices as though someone were singing a Christmas song in a foreign language -- a song like "Deck the Halls".

Most specifically, they described the words as sounding like the part of the song that goes "Fa-la-la-la-la". The singing came strongly and then faded away. But what if the singing had not been a Christmas song at all -- but the sounds of the Irish Brigade "clearing the way- with the fateful cry of Faugh-a-Balaugh?

Those who have spent time at the area known as Burnside Bridge on the battlefield, especially those park rangers and Civil War re-enactors who have been at the location after dark, say that there are strange things going on there as well. Historians and experts report that the fighting which took place here in 1862 left a number of fallen soldiers behind and many of them were hastily buried in unknown locations near the bridge. Could these restless souls be haunting the area? Visitors to the bridge at night have reported visions of blue balls of light moving about in the darkness and the sound of a phantom drum that beats out a cadence and then fades away.

Near the center of Sharpsburg is another site connected to the battle, the St. Paul Episcopal Church. It was used as a Confederate field hospital following the battle, although it was heavily damaged during the fighting and was later rebuilt. Those who have lived close to the building claim they have heard the screams of the dying and injured coming from inside of the structure. They have also seen unexplained lights flickering from the church's tower.

Added by: sdonley on 07/31/2017 DB#:1264

Paranormal Claims

Here are the paranormal claims for this location. These have been found through Internet research, reports from members, or reports from personal interviews. To add a claim, please contact, and we will review and add your information.

Claim # Added Added By Claim
2462 07/31/2017 sdonley Sounds of battle have been heard throughout the area.
2463 07/31/2017 sdonley Apparitions of soldiers have been seen and photographed.
2464 07/31/2017 sdonley Balls of blue lights have been witnessed at night.

Paranormal Evidence

Paranormal evidence is based on claims that have been reported for this location. There can be several types of evidence; however, we have grouped them based on media type for better organization. Here you will find evidence that are logs, audio, video, or photographic.

To add evidence for a claim, you must submit it to for approval to be entered into the database.

CLAIM #: 2463 - Apparitions of soldiers have been seen and photographed.

Evidence Type: Photograph
Encounter Type: Other
Hauting Type: Residual
Investigation Status: More Investigation Needed
William Mumma Photo
Submitted By: sdonley On: 07/31/2017
DBA Approved: Y

Additional Resources

This is a collection of Internet resources for this location. This section will house links to other websites that contain information related to history, claims, investigations, or even the location's website.

Wikipedia Entry
Added: 07/31/2017 By: sdonley
This wikipedia entry provides several details about the battle.
Prairie Ghosts
Added: 07/31/2017 By: sdonley
Website talks about the paranormal activity on the battlefield.

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