Valley Forge FAQs

Martha Washington

Q.How did Martha Washington help during the Winter at Valley Forge.
Linda, Los Angeles, Ca

A.Martha was a great comfort to George Washington at Valley Forge. He appreciated her presence beyond measure. She also spent time entertaining the other wives and officers at Valley Forge. Martha Washington arrived at Valley Forge a little before her husbands birthday. She probably organized a small birthday party for him (he turned 45 that year) in which they had a very simple dinner (it was the week of the worst famine at Valley Forge). The guests were able to enjoy a special "concert" of fifers and drummers from the 2nd Continental Artillery who arrived at Headquarters on their own accord. It was Martha who conveyed the General's thanks for the musicale and tipped them 15 shillings. Martha took over many of the household duties for the General-which was seeing that everything ran smoothly. There was laundry to oversee, meals for various officers and aide-de-camps... The officers wives tried to entertain their men and fellow comrades by having small "parties" and even put on a play: "Cato" by Joseph Addison. Martha was even noted at one point to use thorns instead of pins on her clothes.

You can read more about Martha Washington here.

I'm going to point you in the direction of your local library where you can find LOTS of resources for your questions. Here are some to look for:

SAS, Courtesy The Valley Forge Historical Society

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