Posted by: history591seventeen | June 3, 2008

Valley Forge

Friedrich von Steuben

Friedrich von Steuben and me

Our venture continued at Valley Forge.  Ranger Bill explained why Valley Forge is the most remembered campaign of the eight year war.  He stated four reasons:

1)      highest death troll-1,700 died in 4 1/2 months

2)      France joined the U.S. in war at Valley Forge

3)      Friedrich von Steuben joined the U.S. army to help with training the troops

4)      we started making finished metal goods/stopped sending unfinished goods to English


        Ranger Bill also used a Bible reference that was associated with the conditions, Psalm 23: 1-6, “The Lord is my shepherd. . .”  Using those verses was pretty significant to me, and looking back in history to the importance of the Bible, I can see why that would leave an impression on people in relating to how BAD Valley Forge was- if people really did relate Valley Forge with the “Valley of Death”.


Additionally, viewing the site itself was very cool.  I got a better idea of the size of Valley Forge.  It is covered with some wooded areas in rolling hills.  Then our interactions with the living history soldiers helped my understanding of some of their responsibilities while they were staying here and I really enjoyed seeing George Washington’s headquarters.






I know the knowledge and photos I gained today will help my students grasp the Valley Forge experience.



  1. So I’m a little disappointed you didn’t put the picture of the “thongs”…. It’s ok though.

  2. Hello Dana,

    Curious about comments on religion and the information at Valley Forge, how do you approach this is your classroom? My students always get so defensive when any word of religion is brought up at all. Even when we address the First of Amendment and the freedom of religion. I often have to go over the difference of talking about religion as part of history as opposed to trying to convert or disrespect a religion. Most of my students get it, but I still lose a few to ‘I’m not going to do anything that involves religion.’

    I don’t think there is a way to separate Valley Forge from religion because if you do, you lose a significant part of history that will be left unsaid. History should be covered from many different perspectives.

    Thanks for the reasons on the significance of Valley Forge, I didn’t get them copied all down when the park ranger was talking!!


  3. I like the photo with von Steuben and you – it looks like he’s all ears for you! I think religion is fine in the classroom as long as it stays on a historical basis; sometimes there’s a gray line.

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