Friday, April 14, 2017

Gettysburg and Her General in Gray

In the early summer of 1863, for various reasons, including victories at Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville, Lee urged President Davis to again take the war to northern soil. 
On July 1, 1863, a 3-day bloodbath was fought in Gettysburg, and when the smoke of the cannons cleared Union had triumphed, although nearly 5,000 horses and 50,000 men lay dead or dying.

It is conjectured that because many of the Confederate soldiers never received a proper burial, and with the utter massacre and violence of the battle, historic Gettysburg is the home of many unquiet spirits, including the ghost of what appears to be the ghost of General Robert E. Lee.

There is a Ghost Tour of Gettysburg and a long list of haunted sites.  I’ll only attempt here to list them, but more information can be found at:

The Daniel Lady Farm
Cashtown Inn
Gettysburg Hotel
Baladerry Inn
*The Ghost Train
Tourists can also take a 90-minute ride on the Ghost Train -- the only ghost tour in Gettysburg that takes visitors across the actual battlefield. 

April 7, the Wild Rose Press released Her General in Gray.  In this 93-page story, the hero died at Antietam fighting for the Confederacy.  John Sibley Allen never saw Gettysburg.

Autumn Hartley purchases Allen Hall at a steal, but the northern lass gets far more than a beautiful plantation in the South Carolina Low Country. The house comes complete with its own ghost, a handsome and charming Civil War General—for the Confederacy. The stage is set for another civil conflict.

John Sibley Allen died in battle from a wound in the back, the bullet fired by the turncoat, Beauregard Dudley. The traitor’s reincarnation is Autumn the Interloper’s first dinner guest. Sib bedevils her date and annoys her with fleeting, phantom touches, certain he can frighten her away as he did previous purchasers. As time marches on, her resident ghost becomes more appealing while her suitor, Beau, pales in comparison. Autumn finds her ability to love didn’t perish in the divorce that sent her south seeking a fresh start.

After over a century in the hereafter, Sib discovers he is falling for none other than the feisty Yankee girl, but what future could a modern woman and an old-fashioned ghost possibly hope for?


“You are not there.” Autumn dropped her book and leapt to her feet, shaking her fist at the apparition standing beside the fireplace.

The frolicking blaze shone through the whatever-he-was lounging by the hearth, his arm stretched along the mantel.  A ceramic clock beside his hand chimed the hour—seven golden notes. Tall candles in brass candlesticks flickered in an eerie fire dance. He appeared to be a Civil War soldier of the South, his opaque uniform gray with a nasty red-stained hole near the heart.  Double rows of gold buttons decorated the coat. Three gold stars and a wreath on the collar glittered in the firelight. No blood spilled from the apparition.  Except for his wound, he looked perfectly healthy—for a dead man!  He nodded and bowed much so as his lost society had been, regardless of the strong backs supporting that way of life.

“Oh, but I am, Miss Hartley.”  He straightened, longish hair gently curling over his face.

A chill raced over her, but she suppressed the tremor of apprehension.  Autumn swallowed hard and adjusted her white cotton blouse.  “I don’t believe in ghosts.  You’re not welcome here. I bought this house and am struggling to pay for it.  Get your Halloween self out of my living room.”

He smiled.  “It’s not Halloween, and we share this house.  It was mine, you know, and still is.  I’m willing to share it with you—even if you are a Yankee.  After all, the conflict is over, and I’ll hold no grudge against the Northern aggressors. Even though the South will never surrender.”

“Northern aggressors?”  She inhaled sharply, the vanilla scent of the candles on the dining room table drifting into the living room.  Everything about Allen Hall was beautiful. She loved the house. But this conversation with an arrogant spirit solidified defiance.  “And, for your information, the South did surrender.”

“A point of history.” He shrugged and gave her a condescending glance. “No more.”

It’s a funny and poignant story now available at Amazon for $2.99:

IN HONOR OF THE RELEASE, I'm giving away to one commenter the winner's choice of a PDF of any of my backlist, available on my webside:

For the fallen heroes:


Nancy Gideon said...

I love a good ghost story, either scary or poignant. 13 Ghosts had me hiding under the covers as a child and The Ghost and Mrs. Muir left me sniffling. The thought of those lost souls wandering the battlefield is beyond tragic and devastating to my friends who are sensitive to the beyond. My sister lives in an old house still inhabited by spirits both restless and benign and it took some doing for them to reside peacefully.

Victoria Craven said...

This is very intriguing. I look forward to see how it all comes together.

CJ Burright said...

Just thinking about all those people who died there wrenches my heart, but I do love all the ghost stories surrounding the area.

Nightingale said...

Thank you all for stopping by. I sometimes wonder if my house is haunted, Nancy, and I never watch scary movies. I'll be the first to admit I'm a wimp.

Victoria, appreciate your visit. Sib and Autumn don't know whether to fall in love of have a second Civil War.

CJ, it is horrible. I just wanted to sit and cry. That's why I put the flowers at the end of the post.

Diane Burton said...

I don't do scary. The Ghost and Mrs. Muir and Ghost are 2 of the most poignant movies. I've been to Gettysburg. Although I'm nowhere near sensitive, I remember feeling unsettled there. What a tragedy. Great post, Linda.

Elizabeth Alsobrooks said...

What fun. I love ghost tours. I've taken them in Charleston, San Diego's Old Town, and New Orleans. My next will be either Tombstone or Bisbee, which I hear has a great haunted mine ride. Thanks for sharing. The story sounds very intriguing.