Remembering Valley Forge

Remembering Valley Forge (HMJDW)

Location: King of Prussia, PA 19406 Montgomery County
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Country: United States of America
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N 40° 6.137', W 75° 27.603'

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The People's Park

— Valley Forge National Historical Park —

The perseverance of the soldiers at Valley Forge is a beloved American story. Long-discussed ideas for commemoration of their sacrifices were implemented after the disruption of the Civil War, when the centennials of both the Declaration of Independence and also the encampment itself refocused attention on unification and the ideals of the Revolutionary period.

Preservation came about from citizen action and advocacy. Their common vision was the preservation of a significant place that had inspired the Continental Army, and that continued to inspire Americans a century later.

In 1879 a citizens' group sold $1.00 shares to preserve the small house which General Washington had used as his headquarters. In 1893, in response to citizen concern about performance, the Pennsylvania legislature created a state park here, and began to purchase the land on which the soldiers had encamped.

The states represented at the 1777 encampment were invited to erect commemorative monuments. Individual organizations also honored their ancestors' contributions. Here [in a photo at the bottom of the marker], the Daughters of the American Revolution dedicate a monument in 1911 to soldiers who died during the encampment.

To honor the history of the place, the state transformed the farming landscape into a stylized commemorative park with tour roads and monuments. They removed industry, restored encampment-era buildings, and planted thousands of trees to create an evocative landscape. They chose to provide scenic beauty and expansive views for an emotional connection to history, rather than a dry but accurate restoration of the 1777 landscape.

With a groundswell of support from citizen advocates, President Gerald Ford signed legislation making Valley Forge a national park at the Bicentennial of the Declaration of Independence, on July 4, 1976. The tradition of citizen stewardship continues today as volunteers and partners participate in the ongoing work of advocacy, preservation and interpretation.
Placed ByNational Park Service
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014 at 5:13am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18T E 460788 N 4439211
Decimal Degrees40.10228333, -75.46005000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 40° 6.137', W 75° 27.603'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds40° 6' 8.22" N, 75° 27' 36.18" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)484, 610, 215, 267
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 201-299 Valley Creek Rd, King of Prussia PA 19406, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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