The Village of Valley Forge

The Village of Valley Forge (HMJBB)

Location: King of Prussia, PA 19406 Montgomery County
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Country: United States of America
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N 40° 6.065', W 75° 27.632'

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Ordinary Place, Extraordinary History

— Valley Forge National Historical Park —

An iron forge was established in this remote place in the early 1700s, as there was ample water power from Valley Creek, limestone for processing iron ore, and timber to make charcoal to fuel the furnaces. Soon, dams and mill races, charcoal houses, a saw mill, grist mill, company store, and tenement houses grew up around the forge, forming the nucleus of an iron village. Eventually, the place was named for the forge it depended on: Valley Forge.

"Valley Forge is a manufacturing place, and there is a constant hum of machinery from the paper, flour and woolen mills. The neat little houses of the factory hands are gay with flowers and vines, while the handsome residence of the mill-owner towers castle-like above them. Past all these dwellings, at the end of the street, stands the old-fashioned stone edifice hallowed by Washington's presence."
Harper's New Monthly Magazine

Before the British raid and American occupation, this small village was typical of isolated, rural villages that developed around readily available natural resources. In a region known for iron making, tiny Valley Forge was not a highly important producer, however.

Valley Forge recovered from the devastation of the encampment and grew into a busy manufacturing community. Wharves at the foot of Valley Creek enabled loading of products onto the new canal. A railroad built in the 1840s provided even faster transportation to Philadelphia and beyond. But as industry moved to the cities in the late 19th century, the village declined. After Pennsylvania established a park here in 1893, most buildings that post-dated the encampment were demolished, creating a park landscape that while beautiful, obscures many layers of history.
Placed ByNational Park Service
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Tuesday, September 9th, 2014 at 4:28pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18T E 460746 N 4439078
Decimal Degrees40.10108333, -75.46053333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 40° 6.065', W 75° 27.632'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds40° 6' 3.90" N, 75° 27' 37.92" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)484, 610, 215, 267
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 400-498 Joseph Plumb Martin Trail, King of Prussia PA 19406, US
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