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The Importance of Valley Forge
Transcript of The Importance of Valley Forge
George Washington: Prior to becoming the nation's first president, George Washington was a general with a very large role in the American Revolution. Washington was a very important and influential person in the war, and went on to become the first president of the United States after the war.
Baron von Steuben
On February 23, 1778, Friedrich Wilhem von Steuben arrived in Valley Forge from Europe.
Baron von Steuben played a pivotal role in transforming Washington's army. Von Steuben has spent time in the Prussian Army, and brought his expertise to the army. He taught them drills and tips to be more succsessful in battle.
More von Steuben...
He was very important to the war because, without him, the army would not have gained military stregth and techniques that hugely benefited the army.
Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, is in suburban Philadelphia. It is a hilly area, and Washington chose to set up camp at the bottom of the hill, where he was more sheltered from the extremities, and the area was easily defendable from attacks.
There is a large statue of Baron von Steuben located in Valley Forge National Park.
The conditions over the winter of 1778 were very harsh. It was consistently snowing and bitterly cold, and very few men had shoes. Therefore, frostbite was a very big issue. Additionally, the encampment came with very few supplies, and food was scarce. The soldiers frequently only ate a firecake as a meal.
Firecake was a blend of flower and water, two things that the people at Valley Forge did have access to. The lack of food was not just hard on people, it is estimated that 700 horses died that winter from starvation. As well as horses, about 2,500 of the 10,000 men who lived at Valley Forge died after the long winter.
Although there was no battle fought at Valley Forge, why was it so important to the Revolutionary War?
This building is where General Washington stayed during his stay. It still stands in Valley Forge National Park today.
The winter stay in Valley Forge took place during the American Revolution.The American colonies were fighting for independence from the British monarchy. Leading up to the colonists stay at Valley Forge, the British army had taken control of Philadelphia. However, as winter encroached, both armies
took an unofficial "break" from fighting. It was during this time that General Washington decided to take his troops to Valley Forge to rest and recuperate over the winter.
After Valley Forge...
Shortly after the armies stay in Valley Forge, the colonists and the British began to clash again. It was not until 1781 that the British army surrenderord at the Battle of Yorktown that the war ended.
So? Why is Valley Forge Important?
Even without a battle, Valley Forge was very important to the American Revolution. People like George Washington and Baron von Stueben were able to utilize the time spent there to benefit the army. Without the rest, army training and bonding as an army, the Patriots might not have had the strength to continue fighting, and our country might...
not have been founded. The men who roughed the hard winter in poor conditions simultaneously managed to become stronger, and that would not have happened if they had not been at Valley Forge. Valley Forge played a very important role in the Revolution, one that was in part responsible for our country today.
My bibliography and footnotes can be found on the document I shared with you.
First Quarter Project