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 Post subject: Happy Halloween - Civil War Style
PostPosted: Sat Oct 27, 2012 1:33 am 
From "Haunted Chickamauga":

Virtually every battlefield is said to be haunted, but Chickamauga seems to be even more haunted than most. There are so many ghosts wandering the grounds, that it would be impossible to catalogue them all. Some are the typical ghosts of soldiers, and some may not even be ghosts at all.

The most notable of the latter category is also the most famous ghost to haunt the battlefield. The term 'ghost' is used loosely, because this entity may not be a ghost at all. It is known as "Old Green Eyes." Many people have claimed to have seen it, usually (but not always) on Snodgrass Hill. Most describe it as being a large creature with fanglike teeth, a hairy body, and burning, green eyes. This creature is said to walk on it two legs, and perhaps wear a cloak. Over the years, thousands have claimed to have seen him. The first sighting may have been at the battle itself, or even earlier.

There are several stories which account for Old Green Eye's origin. Native American legend told of such a creature which roamed the area long ago. Perhaps an ancestor of Old Green Eyes? Legend has it that some soldiers actually saw the creature roaming the area just after the battle. Some have claimed that Green Eyes is actually the ghost of a soldier whose head was blown off by a cannon, and his body destroyed. According to this legend, the soldier's head drifts about the battlefield, searching for his body. Regardless of Old Green Eye's origin, he remains a frightening creature, if he does exist.

Aside from Old Green Eyes, there is more weirdness on the grounds. Gunshots are sometimes heard in the distance, and marching is heard. There is also a soldier who is supposed to walk the roads at night. If he sees you, he is said to stare at you until you leave. Another legend tells of a bride-to-be, whose fiancee was killed in the battle. According to this tale, she still walks the area searching for him in a wedding dress.

Battlefields are almost always haunted. If ghosts do exist, the scenes of battles would be the most logical place for them to reside, due to the enormous number of deaths and emotions that accompany battles. If you ever visit Chickamauga, keep an eye out for Old Green Eyes. You don't want to wander too close to him!

Finally, we should take a brief look at one of the strangest incidents to take place in the park, although it is unknown whether it is linked to the supernatural or not. The incident occurred at Wilder Tower. This monument marks the center of the Union lines where the Confederates finally broke through and routed the Federal forces.

The tower is a stone structure that stands 85 feet high. It was built in 1903 by men who served under Colonel John T. Wilder at Chickamauga. The colonel’s mounted infantry, armed with Spencer repeating rifles, managed to hold off the attacking Confederate troops long enough for the Union men to make a somewhat orderly retreat.

When Wilder had been commissioned, the Union army was so poorly equipped that his men were given mules to ride and hatchets for weapons. He used every political favor that he could to get horses for his troops and he used his own money to purchase rifles. Wilder bought each of his men a Spencer Rifle that was equipped to hold seven shots. He purchased 2100 of them for $13 each. Thanks to these weapons, Wilder’s men were able to hold off more than 14,000 Confederates during the retreat.

The tower was erected in Wilder’s memory by survivors of the mounted infantry. Souvenirs of the war were sealed into the cornerstone of the structure, which was scheduled to be opened again in 1976. The stone would then be opened to celebrate the Bicentennial. Strangely, although the stone showed no signs of being disturbed in any way.... the contents placed inside in 1903 had vanished.

The strange incident at the tower took place in 1970 when a young man decided to climb the tower after dark. Since the park is open at night, the tower is kept locked in order to keep people from going out onto the observation deck at the top. But this didn’t stop the man, as he instead climbed the lightning rod which was fixed the back of the tower. He then slipped into a gun slot which was placed about 14 feet off the ground. He went inside and ran up the steps to the top, where he called to his friends, who were about 50 feet away drinking beer.

Suddenly, the young people outside heard a scream from inside of the tower. Panicked the boy ran down the winding staircase and quickly jumped out of the small window from which he had entered the tower.... or so he thought. Instead, he fell about 25 feet onto solid concrete and although he survived, was paralyzed for the rest of his life.

He was never able to explain what had happened at Wilder Tower.

As Halloween approaches I thought I'd bring up a ghost story or two. The problem is that the internet is flooded with them! Every Tom, Dick and Harry Tourist is claiming to see something in a photo they took with their kids on a cannon. If anything the ghost is likely thinking "get the bleep off my cannon!" But the stories and photos are so lame as to be foolish to reprint here.

I have heard some good ones though through the years though I continue to report I have never seen any ghosts despite my wanderings at night over the battlefields when I get the chance. I could take a paid Ghost Tour but any ghost I have to pay to see I dont trust!

I still believe the best way to get "spooked" (if your into that) is to walk a battlefield at night. Especially Shiloh or Chickamauga. Sure, its kind of illegal but that just adds to the experience. Realistically your biggest worry is twisting an ankle but your mind will play tricks on you in the dark and it can seem every tree, monument, and cannon is moving or creating unusual shadows. If you really have guts go without a flashlight! You haven't seen a battlefield until you see it by moonlight and try to navigate around the trails and monuments in the darkness!

Happy Halloween everyone!

Exit Humanity trailer from YouTube (Civil War Zombie Movie)

Looks like the South has risen again!

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