Our Ghostly Encounter at Shiloh's Bloody Pond


 

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Pam tells the story...

On Thursday February 5, 2009 we toured Shiloh National Military Park. It was a cool day and partly cloudy. After geocaching around Bethel Springs, TN  all morning, we headed for the battlefield. We spent about four hours on a self-guided driving tour through the park, reading historical markers and exploring the battlefield by car and on foot. There were very few people there. We basically had the place to ourselves. Around 5:00 PM with dusk approaching, we headed out. As we drove by the Peach Orchard and the Bloody Pond, we decided to get a couple more pictures.  We parked just beyond the Bloody Pond.

Dan put the car in reverse, looked in the mirror and saw a man walking down the left hand side of the road by the Peach Orchard.  He brought it to my attention with "Where in the hell did that guy come from?"  We had just driven through that area seconds earlier and there was no one there. I looked in my side mirror on the passenger side of the car and also saw the man. He appeared to be thin, medium height wearing loose fitting grey clothes. He had no hat and wasn't carrying any equipment that we could see. We could not see his face. 

I immediately felt a sense of unease and didn't want him walking up to the car. Dan backed up the car using the mirrors, keeping the man in sight. Dan has good instincts for spotting and dealing with potential trouble and some guy walking towards us in the middle of nowhere definitely qualified. We thought about getting out of there but judged we could be in and out before anything happened.  When we stopped at the  Bloody Pond Monument,  Dan got the camera, checked on the guy one last time in the mirror and got out of the car. He immediately looked down the road and the mystery walker was gone. He tried to spot the man. There was no cover to speak of and the air was deathly still, but he saw and heard nothing. He even scanned the area with the 5x zoom on the camera and checked around the car thinking that we had closed in faster than expected.  But the man had vanished.

Panoramic of the area of sighting.

Area of sighting, which was at dusk with no vegetation cover. Road is straight but appears curved due to panoramic format of the image.

Dan then started moving around to get our pictures.  I was in the car and I could still see the man in the mirror.  I didn't know that he had disappeared from Dan's sight. I leaned over to the open car door and yelled at him to hurry up with the picture.  When I looked back in the mirror, the mystery man was gone. We didn't see him again. We got our pictures and drove down the road yucking it up about weirdos, banjo music and ghosts. It wasn't until later that night when we compared notes that we realized something very out of the ordinary had happened.

There were several things about this encounter that were quite unusual. One, the man appeared out of nowhere from an area we had just driven through.  We knew that no one was there. Two, we both immediately felt uneasy about this man. Three, we watched him in the mirrors for a good two to three minutes. This wasn't some flash sighting out the corner of our eye.  Four, even though he was walking, he didn't seem to be getting any closer. We backed up almost half the distance to where the man was and Dan remarked then that the image didn't change a bit.  Not only that, if someone is walking down a road and a car starts backing up towards them, you would expect there to be some sort of reaction.  Slow down, stop, move off to the side, something defensive or precautionary.  But the mystery man just kept on walking.  Five, the man vanished from our view the same way he appeared, literally in the blink of an eye. Six - and this is the clincher -  I could still see the man in my mirror when he had vanished from Dan's direct sight outside of the car. We didn't know that until we compared notes later.

We have gone over it many times trying to find a logical explanation for what we saw. So far, we haven't found one. After doing some searching on the Internet, we came up with a number of credible sightings over the years of solitary figures and apparitions along the roads around the park. They usually fit the description of a Confederate soldier. We consider ourselves to be rational, level-headed people with an agnostic view of this supernatural stuff. We neither believe nor disbelieve.  Our opinion is that 99.99% of the things that go on in the world have a logical explanation but that there are forces and phenomena we can't comprehend that make up the other .01%.  Did we actually see a ghost?  You tell us. It's our own geocaching X-File.

Good haunting..... Dan (Alpha6) and Pam (KidsRN)