Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Walking the Philadelphia Campaign

After reading about the Philadelphia Campaign of 1777 and playing out a simulation of the Battle of Germantown in class, my Military History class took a battlefield walk of important Revolutionary War sites int he area. We started in Germantown, visiting both the Chew House (second photo below. Some battle damage is still visible on the wall) and the locaiton of the main British lines. The original site of our school was used as a hospital by the British during teh Battle, so we got to view the old schoolhouse, too.

We took a trip to the former paper mill of Rittenhousetown, where the Pennsylvania Militia unsuccessfully tried to pin the British left with an attack across the Wissahickon Gorge. There are few more vivid examples of how terrain can shape tactical decisions.
The, after a stop at a Revolutionary-era food court, we went to Valley Forge, site of teh winter encampment of 1777-8. The students checked out the huts and gained an appreciation for the living condition, even on a gorgeous fall day.

After checking out the outer defenses, we visited the artillery park and discussed the importance of a reserve.

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