Delmarva Folklore

Topics: Ghost, Paranormal, Ghost Hunters Pages: 3 (971 words) Published: February 23, 2011
Fort Delaware became a State Park in 1951. Dating back to 1859, the Fort was originally used to protect the ports of Wilmington and Philadelphia, and served as a Union fortress and a Confederate prison. Many of Fort Delaware’s first Confederate prisoners were brought from the Battle of Kernstown in 1862 and the Battle of Gettysburg in 1863. A total of thirty-two thousand prisoners were kept at Fort Delaware. The state of Delaware obtained the Fort from the United States Federal government in 1947. Visitors can access Fort Delaware from Delaware City to Pea Patch Island via a ½ mile ferry ride across the Delaware River. Historically dressed tour guides take visitors on a journey through Fort Delaware that includes hands-on activities that date back to the times when Fort Delaware served as a Union fortress and Confederate prison. During the Civil War, the Fort was known as the Fort Delaware Death Pen, and was also called the most dreaded Union prison. Almost 13,000 Confederate prisoners were housed in an area meant to hold only 10,000 men. Many prisoners attempted to escape and were caught. Over 2,700 men died in the Fort during the Civil War. According to an article by James A. Cox in the Civil War Times for July-August 1993, Fort Delaware “had the highest death rate of any Union prison, and through a combination of dreadful location, official mismanagement, and political malice and vengeance, it managed to develop its own style of shocking, inhuman treatment.” Apparitions have been spotted during tours, by visitors, park officials and by re-enactors. Alleged paranormal activity that has occurred in recent years includes loud bangs with no known source, disembodied voices, objects moving and full-bodied apparitions. One of Fort Delaware’s most well known specters turns out to be a woman who frequents an officer’s kitchen. No one knows who she is exactly but she seems to think she owns the kitchen and made an appearance to female re-enactors who use the room....
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