Recently featured on the TV show Ghost Hunters, Fort Mifflin always finds itself at the top of the list of most haunted places in Philadelphia. Built in 1771, the fort was an important outpost during the Revolutionary War designed to defend Philadelphia from British ships. During the Civil War, the fort was turned into a makeshift prison for captured Confederate soldiers, wayward Union soldiers, and unruly civilians. Over the years it has served as a training ground and up until 1954 was the oldest fort in the nation in continuous use. The venerable Fort Mifflin has weathered the passing of time as it lies between the Philadelphia Shipping Yards and the International Airport along the Delaware River while many claim some of its past residents refuse to leave.
I recently paid these hallowed grounds a visit one dreary spring afternoon with a friend looking for ghosts. Maybe it was the gloom of the light rain falling, or the meditative drone of the airplanes flying so low overhead, or the toxic smells wafting over the marshlands, or the perfectly staged lighting or lack thereof in each and every passageway and tunnel, or the fact that I hit my head on one of the lowly arched doorways in the festering bowels of the ancient fort, but there was certainly a feel to the place that could only be described as creepy. Here are the photos I captured while exploring Fort Mifflin:
Written and photographed by David H. Schleicher