MARCH IN OF THE CONTINENTAL ARMY
VALLEY FORGE NATIONAL HISTORICAL PARK
On December 19, 1777, General George Washington led the Continental Army into Valley Forge for what would become a six-month encampment. This "march in" marked what ultimately became the turning point of the Revolutionary War.
In years past, Valley Forge National Historical Park commemorates this date each year with candle-lit tours, musical performances, and an appearance by the Commander-in-Chief himself. The commemoration of the Continental Army’s arrival at Valley Forge is a popular annual event, and this year’s programming will be online!
In the days leading up to Saturday, December 19 (the date of the weary army's arrival) Valley Forge National Historical Park will release a series of fun and engaging virtual programs. See the event schedule below for details.
For complete March In videos released each day, please visit the link below:
Programming is subject to change. Featured content is released at 11 AM each day, with the exception of the Facebook Premiere screening of the new orientation film at 7 PM on December 19.
MONDAY, DECEMBER 14
Featured Video: Popular Myths of Valley Forge vignette
Length: 3:32 minutes
At Valley Forge, the weather outside was not as frightful as visitors usually think. Gain some new insight as we dispel this and other myths about the park’s history.
Featured Activity: On Guard! An Online Sentry Activity
In this interactive online activity, players take on the role of a sentry in the Continental Army in order to learn more about the people of the Valley Forge winter encampment and the challenges of sentry duty.
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 15
Featured Video: Nature’s Refuge vignette
Length: 3:30 minutes
During the American Revolution, each side attempted to defeat the other by using terrain and resources to their advantage. Yet opposing armies often faced differing environmental challenges. While the British occupied the port city of Philadelphia, the Continental Army relied on the natural resources of Valley Forge. Learn more about the waters, meadows, and forests present in the park today, as some of them would have been around during the encampment period.
Featured Activity: 360 Huts
Get a taste of encampment life as you explore the interior of two recreated huts at the Muhlenberg Brigade: one built for officers, the other meant for a squad of twelve enlisted soldiers.
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 16
Featured Video: Unsung Heroes of Valley Forge vignette
Length: 3:30 minutes
Learn about the role of women, as well as the diverse cultures and ethnicities within the encampment. Many were present during the march into Valley Forge.
Featured Video: Delta Sigma Theta, Inc. and the Patriots of African Descent Monument interview
Length: 29:11 minutes
An interview featuring Paulette Jones and Deanna Shelton from Delta Sigma Theta, Inc. They discuss how their Valley Forge Alumnae Chapter erected the park’s Patriots of African Descent Monument. Since 2020 marks the one-hundredth anniversary of the 19th Amendment, Jones and Shelton also talk about another historic march—Delta Sigma Theta’s participation in the 1913 Woman Suffrage Parade in Washington, D.C.
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 17
Featured Video: Life Before & After the Encampment vignette
Length: 3:10 minutes
The Welsh-Quaker farming community at Valley Forge found their lives disrupted with the arrival of the Continental Army. Imagine 12,000 people encamped in your neighborhood! Learn about the history of Valley Forge before the encampment, and how resident farmers dealt with a revolution at their doorstep.
Featured Video: Shelter at Valley Forge vignette
Length: 4:32 minutes
Although the Continental Army benefitted from Valley Forge’s natural defenses, a lack of housing meant that soldiers had to construct their own. Learn about the different types of shelter present in the encampment, and who would have used them.
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 18
Featured Video: March-In with Ajena C. Rogers interview
Length: 58:38 minutes
Park Ranger Ajena C. Rogers discusses her past work as a living history interpreter at Valley Forge NHP, as well as her involvement in the park’s new orientation film where she reprised her role as Hannah Till, an enslaved pastry cook within General George Washington’s household.
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 19
Facebook Premiere Screening: Determined to Persevere: The Valley Forge Encampment film
Watch the park’s new 19-minute orientation film with Park Guides Jennifer Bolton and Dave Lawrence. They will chat online and answer visitors’ history questions. Also, get some insight into the filming process, as both worked behind and in front of the camera: Jennifer portrayed a nurse, and Dave played Brigadier General Henry Knox.
Click here to join the event.