The Philadelphia Campaign and Washington’s Victory: Brandywine, Germantown, Monmouth and more – October 15-18, 2014 – PAST TOUR

The Philadelphia Campaign and Washington’s Victory: Brandywine, Germantown, Monmouth and more – October 15-18, 2014 – PAST TOUR

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Wednesday, October 15 (7:30pm) – Saturday, October 18 (5:00pm)

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Our Tour Leaders: Edward G. Lengel, William Welsch and Richard Bellamy

Registration Fee: $475

The_Philadelphia_Campaign_and_Wshington's_Victory“Naked and starving as they are, we cannot enough admire the incomparable patience and fidelity of the soldiery.” These words of Washington on the National Memorial Arch describe the suffering the Continental Army endured at Valley Forge. Our tour will trace the Philadelphia Campaign of 1777 from Washington’s defeat at Brandywine through the army’s march out of Valley Forge heading to its success at Monmouth in June, 1778.
In the summer of 1777, British General William Howe launched what he believed would be the decisive campaign of the war. His goal was to capture Philadelphia, capital of the new nation. On our first day we will begin with a visit to Brandywine battlefield, where the British decisively defeated Washington’s army on September 11, 1777. We will start with the beginning action at Kennett Meeting House, tracing the diversionary attack on Washington’s position at Chad’s Ford. Next we’ll visit the British flanking position at Osborne’s Hill; then it’s on to Birmingham Meeting House, where the battle culminated.

Next will be a brief stop to discuss the Battle of the Clouds – the battle that never was. After lunch at a local restaurant, we’ll head to the wonderfully interpreted Battle of Paoli site, where Anthony Wayne’s Pennsylvania Division was surprised in a night attack by General Charles “No Flint” Grey in the so-called Paoli Massacre of September 21. Was it really a massacre?

Our final stop will be Fort Mifflin. It was at this off-the-beaten-track gem that Lt. Col. Samuel Smith’s troops endured a fierce British bombardment before leaving the fort and the river to Lord Howe.

Our second day will begin with a visit to Germantown, scene of Washington’s October 4 surprise attack on the encamped British forces. Washington’s overly complex attack plan was thwarted by actual fog as well as the fog of war created by a determined British stand in the Chew House—Cliveden—which we’ll visit. We’ll also cover some other key locations of the action, including a stop at the Deshler-Morris House. Then we’re off to Fort Washington, the Continental encampment after Germantown. Here at Whitemarsh in early December, Washington was unsuccessful in luring Howe into an attack against his strong entrenchments at Fort Hill and Militia Hill.
After lunch, we will conclude with a stop at Washington’s most famous encampment, Valley Forge. We’ll learn why Valley Forge was chosen as a winter camp, reviewing its strengths and weaknesses. We will discuss in depth the hard winter of 1777-78, with consideration of some of the popular myths. We’ll visit the camp sites of the 16 Continental brigades, the newly refurbished Washington Headquarters complex, the impressive National Memorial Arch, the Memorial Chapel, and the Valley Forge Visitor Center.

Throughout the tour’s first two days, we’ll review the extensive literature of the campaign and explore some interesting sidelights. You’ll be able to decide for yourself if Benjamin Franklin was correct when he said that Howe had not captured Philadelphia, but that Philadelphia had captured Howe! You will trace the maneuvers of the campaign and experience the suffering and rebirth of the Continental Army.

The tour’s third day will be spent on the Monmouth battlefield in New Jersey where we will extensively walk the battlefield and visit the new visitor’s center. Our discussion will include a debate of whether or not Monmouth was an American victory, a stalemate or a successful British rear guard action which fit into Sir Henry Clinton’s strategic plan. We’ll also discussion the part Major General Charles Lee played in the battle when his generalship was called into question by Washington. Our tour leaders have different opinions on the battle’s results and Lee’s leadership, so you’ll want to be there for the spirited discussion.

Our Tour Leaders:

Dr. Edward G. Lengel is editor of the George Washington Papers Project at the University of Virginia. He is the author of three books on Washington including the critically acclaimed General George Washington: A Military Biography. He was a consultant to Mount Vernon’s new interpretive visitor’s center and has lectured widely on Washington and the American Revolution
William M. Welsch is a frequent speaker on the American Revolution and an experienced tour leader of Revolutionary War sites. He is a founding member and president of the American Revolution Round Table of Richmond, Virginia. His article “Washington’s Indispensable, Yet Unknown Lieutenants” appeared in American Revolution magazine. Bill’s most recent article appeared in the print version of the Journal of the American Revolution; it is a logistical study of Washington’s crossing of the Delaware in 1776
Richard Bellamy is an experienced tour leader of the Monmouth battlefield. He has served on board of the Friends of the Monmouth Battlefield. Rich is also a licensed battlefield guide at Gettysburg National Battlefield Park.

Tour Registration Fee: $475

What’s included: motor coach transportation, three lunches, beverage and snack breaks, a map and materials package, all admissions and gratuities, and the services of three experienced tour guides. Our hotel will provide a complimentary hot and cold breakfast buffet each day. Tour participants are responsible for transportation to the headquarters hotel, and securing a room reservation, if necessary. Dinner is on your own. Tour goes out rain or shine. Please see our policy page for information about cancellations.
Added Benefit: America’s History will provide you with pick up and drop off at the Philadelphia International Airport, if you are flying in for this tour.
Hotel: We have arranged with the headquarters hotel for a group rate of $99.00 per night plus tax (double or single occupancy.) Please call the Holiday Inn Express, 1 Morehall Road, Frazer, PA 19355 at 610-651-0400 and ask for the America’s History group rate. This rate will be guaranteed until September 15, so please make your reservations soon.

Register Online:

Register by phone, e-mail or postal mail:

  • Toll-free: 1-855-OUR-HISTORY (687-4478)
  • Email us at:
  • Postal mail: America’s History LLC, P. O. Box 1076, Goochland, VA 23063

Visa, Master Card and Discover accepted. We take checks too!

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