This bed and breakfast lays some eight miles to the west of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, but shares with it the history of the famous Civil War battle, as well as the reports of spiritual activity that has remained since those days. It was built circa 1797 and today is known by the name of the town in which was built. The name came about as result of the first innkeeper's practice of only accepting cash and no credit for goods and highway tolls he collected. The town existed on a stretch of road known as Route 30 (or The Lincoln Highway), which would serve as a supply line back to Virginia for the Confederate Army and bring the entire Confederate Army of Northern Virginia to Cashtown's doorstep in late June of 1863.
A Confederate Calvary under Jeb Stuart had previously occupied Cashtown in late 1862, but the former occupation would pale in comparison to that of the one less than a year later. Emboldened by recent victories, Confederate General Robert E. Lee advanced his forces into Union territory and made his way across Pennsylvania. When he received word that Union forces were just to the north and heading in his direction, Lee ordered his troops to congregate in Cashtown until Union positions were better known. Confederate Major General A.P. Hill arrived in the town on June 29 and quickly set-up headquarters at the small inn. Lee's strict orders were for the troops to wait there until the army could be united. However a fateful decision was made at Cashtown Inn one day later that would spark one of the most decisive battles of the Civil War.
The Battle of Gettysburg
On June 30, Confederate General James Johnston Pettigrew had led his troops into the outskirts of Gettysburg, looking for shoes and other supplies, where they met up with Union cavalrymen. Rather than engage, he withdrew back to Cashtown and reported his findings to General Henry Heth. On June 26th, Confederate forces had ventured into Gettysburg to secure rations and shoes for the men to wear. Apparently finding little, they moved on to the town of York and put forth the same demands. Heth was either unaware of this or did not care because his next move was to approach General A.P. Hill and ask if had any objections to Heth moving his men into Gettysburg the next morning to get shoes. Hill simply replied, "None at all." The next morning, Union forces fired upon Heth's advancing division and Heth ordered his men to fight back. The Battle of Gettysburg was underway.
During the Battle
The town of Cashtown transformed from a small town into a Confederate camp during those days of the battle and it is known that a small stable next to the Inn (that no longer exists) was used to house injured soldiers. There are also stories that the basement was turned into a surgery room during the battle and the small water inlet there turned the nearby stream red with blood. It is said that so many amputated limbs were tossed out the window that they quickly piled so high that it blocked any light from coming into the basement. The Inn also continued to serve as a headquarters for Major General Hill during the battle and it is often reported that more Confederate Generals (even Confederate President Jefferson Davis) passed through the Inn's front doors than in any other place in America. On July 4, a major Union victory had been secured and the Confederate Army began their withdrawal from Cashtown and back towards Virginia.
After the Battle
The Inn continued to operate over the years, but in 1948 a nearby bypass was constructed that ultimately diverted tourists and traffic from Cashtown. With dwindling money, the Inn fell into disrepair. In 1987, Charles and Carolyn Buckley purchased the Inn and started the process of restoring this historic landmark, which still serves guests to this day. What they and subsequent owners have found since is that their restoration efforts have also stirred up the ghosts of the past as well.
The Ghosts of Cashtown Inn
There seem to be plenty of reports of paranormal activity at the Inn overtime. Indeed, it is said that every room in the Inn is haunted, but some more than others. The A.P. Hill Room for one is now a guest room, but was the room occupied by Major General A.P. Hill during the battle. Guests have reported the rocking chair mysteriously moving during the night and the sensation of someone sitting on the bed while they try to sleep. Additionally, the sound of knocking on the door happens on a occasion and when the guest answers the door, they find no one there.
Disembodied footsteps are also commonly reported throughout the Inn, guests have reported returning to their rooms to find their suitcases packed and even being awoken in the night by the sound of horses, only to see the land empty when they looked out there window. Finally, people have reported encountering someone dressed in a Confederate uniform in the hallway or near the bar. In fact, the Inn has several relatively famous photos of alleged ghosts in Civil War garb that were taken years after the battle was over.
In Television and Film
The strange activity of Cashtown Inn has brought in various TV shows based around the paranormal. The Inn has been the subject of episodes of Mysterious Journeys and the Sci-Fi Channel's Ghost Hunters. On the paranormal side of things, its connection to that famous Civil War battle has also made it a stop for movies and documentaries about the battle. In fact, the Inn is shown in the movie Gettysburg and its star, Sam Elliot, stayed in the General Lee Suite during the production - And no, he didn't report any ghostly activity.
The Inn Today
Cashtown Inn continues to thrive to this day, attracting both people interested in the stories of the paranormal and its unique place in the history of the Battle of Gettysburg. It even plays a role in the special Ghosts of Gettysburg Weekend Investigations and annual Halloween investigations. For more information, please visit their site below.