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The Friends of Valley Forge

Our mission is to advocate for Valley Forge National Historical Park, to enhance the visitor experience and to promote public appreciation of the Park’s historic, environmental and recreational resources.

March into Valley Forge

Friday, December 19 6–8 pm Visitor Center Free Event
The Marth to Valley Forge

The March to Valley Forge
by William T. Trego, 1883

On display in the Visitor Center, courtesy the American Revolution Center.

On December 19, 1777 General George Washington’s Continental Army “marched in” to Valley Forge to set up winter quarters. This annual event commemorates their arrival and deter­mination to persevere against insurmountable hardship and difficult conditions during their 6-month encampment. Join us this December 19th and experience an evening in Valley Forge. Take a candle-lit guided walk to the Muhlenberg Brigade huts where you’ll encounter a living continental camp. Warm up in the Visitor Center with 18th century music, refreshments, and more!

This event is weather dependent. Please call 610-783-1099 for the most recent update as the event nears.

Schedule of Events • Visitor Center

18th Century Music

Enjoy musical performances by the Colonial Revelers, and join in with familiar carols and traditional colonial dancing.

Meet General Washington

Mingle with the Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army, as portrayed by Dean Malissa and learn about the trials and tribulations of the nation’s war for independence as of December 1777.

Sample American Heritage Chocolate

Watch a historic chocolate making demonstration and sample an 18th century hot chocolate recipe featuring American Heritage Chocolate.

Art in the Park Exhibits

In addition to a unique collection of Revolutionary War artifacts, two additional art displays will be on exhibit:

  • The March To Valley Forge by William T. Trego (1883), depicts the Continental Army as they marched in to Valley Forge on December 19, 1777.
  • Explore the Valley Forge Gallery Cafe, a new rotating exhibit featuring photographs and sketches from participants of the park’s Landscapes and Structures Photography Program and the Changing Landscape Art Program for students.

Schedule of Events • Park Theater

Candle-lit Guided Tour Walks

Travel with a Continental Soldier 1/4 mile along the Joseph Plumb Martin Trail, which will be patrolled by Washington’s Guards, to the Muhlenberg Brigade Huts. Walks depart approximately every 20 minutes. Last walk of the evening departs at 7:45 PM.

Schedule of Events • Muhlenberg Brigade Hut Area

Tour the Huts

Each hut focuses on a different encampment theme including: hut construction, soldier life, supplies, the army’s impact on civilian life during the encampment, and camp followers. A hands on children’s activity station will also be located along the company street.

Warm Up Around the Campfire

Hear stories about the first three years of the American Revolution by Continental Soldiers around the fire pit.

Visit the Redoubt

Take a walk beyond the company street and visit the recreated redoubt, an earthen fortification which would have been built by the army to help protect the encampment against a possible British attack.

Brandywine – Meet the Author & Book Signing

Saturday, December 27 1 pm The Encampment Store, located in the Visitor Center
Brandywine cover

Brandywine is the first complete study to merge the strategic, political, and tactical history of this complex operation and important set-piece battle into a single compelling account. More than a decade in the making, Michael C. Harris’ sweeping prose relies almost exclusively upon original archival research and his personal knowledge of the terrain. Enhanced with original maps, illustrations, and modern photos, and told largely through the words of those who fought there, Brandywine will take its place as one of the most important military studies of the American Revolution ever written.

Michael C. Harris

About the Author: Michael C. Harris is a graduate of the University of Mary Washington and the American Military University. He has worked for the National Park Service in Fredericksburg, Virginia, Fort Mott State Park in New Jersey, and the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission at Brandywine Battlefield. He has conducted tours and staff rides of many east coast battlefields. Michael is certified in secondary education and currently teaches in the Philadelphia region. He lives in Pennsylvania with his wife, Michelle and son, Nathanael.

Valley Forge Legacy: The Muster Roll Project

muster roll

The Valley Forge Muster Roll is dedicated to the memory of those who were at the Valley Forge encampment from December 19, 1777 to June 19, 1778. The Continental Army used monthly muster rolls to track the army’s strength. Each roll contains names, ranks, dates of enlistment, and other notes on soldiers’ assignments, activities, or conditions. In addition, the names officers, camp followers, civilians and others present at the Valley Forge encampment are included. You may be surprised at the wide array of people who were at Valley Forge.

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