Continental Army Soldiers’ Clothing, Head to Toe
If you’ve ever attended the First Crossing or Christmas Day Crossing reenactments at Washington Crossing Historic Park, you might have noticed something: the soldiers aren’t wearing the same uniform. In fact, the clothing worn by the Continental Army progressed greatly throughout the Revolutionary War. In the early days of the Revolution, militiamen wore civilian clothes. It wasn’t until 1779 that Congress adopted a standardized military uniform. “At the time of the crossing in 1776, soldiers’ uniforms were provided by individual state governments to their troops,” says John Godzieba, president of the Friends of Washington Crossing Park and the reenactor who Read More
Help Us Prepare the Flock for Winter
Now that autumn is here, the Thompson-Neely Farmstead team is looking ahead and preparing for another winter. Four new lambs (pictured), welcomed in August 2021, have brought our heritage breed flock up to 15 sheep. The sheep and goats requires a lot of care, which is largely supported by generous donors through our popular Sponsor a Sheep program. Here’s how farmstead staff and volunteers are preparing the flock for winter: Food: Once winter arrives and the grass in the meadow stops growing, our hungry sheep are fed hay. They go through about half a bale a day, or 200 bales Read More
What happened to the crossing site between 1776 and the park’s founding?
About 140 years passed between the crossing on December 25, 1776 and when the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania passed legislation in 1917 that established Washington Crossing Historic Park. But the crossing, and its impact on the Revolutionary War, never faded from the collective consciousness in that time, says Kimberly McCarty, the park’s curator. “In fact, it became mythologized not long after it happened,” she says. Depicting the Crossing In 1819, Thomas Sully, a leading portrait painter in Philadelphia at the time, painted the now-famous “The Passage of the Delaware.” The scene features a majestic-looking George Washington presiding over the first brigade to cross Read More
Book Review of “Revolutionary Princeton 1774-1783: The Biography of an American Town in the Heart of a Civil War”
Reviewed by David Price, Washington Crossing Historic Park Historical Interpreter Local author and historian Larry Kidder has once again crafted a thoroughly informed and meticulously researched narrative relating to America’s Revolutionary era. This new book continues the focus of his previous work on how the political and military turbulence of the 1770s impacted the lives of people living in the greater Delaware Valley, placing his study of their circumstances and challenges within the broader historical context of young America’s founding struggle. Kidder’s latest creation follows on the heels of his earlier accounts of this period, Ten Crucial Days: Washington’s Vision Read More
Two Area Students Complete Summer Internships at the Park
This summer, the Friends of Washington Crossing Park welcomed two interns: Jillian Miller and Lucy Buchanan. Jillian Miller: Educating Future Historians Jillian Miller, a student at Hatboro-Horsham High School, spent the summer organizing this year’s Colonial Days Summer Camp as part of an internship sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of Washington Crossing-Yardley. In addition to leading the camp in late August, Jillian prepared for campers’ arrival weeks in advance. They have helped with the Colonial Days Summer Camp before, but this year she took on a new role by organizing the itinerary herself. They’ve created schedules, ordered supplies, and reached Read More
What Did the Continental Army Learn from the Ten Crucial Days?
The period surrounding the crossing has come to be known as the Ten Crucial Days. Those battles, and the maneuvering around them, affected the Continental Army in ways both profound and practical. A Renewed Spirit “The most obvious lesson [the Continental Army] learned was that it could in fact defeat the enemy in combat and that the war could go on; it wasn’t a lost cause,” says William “Larry” Kidder, a Revolutionary War historian and author. “The Battle of Trenton was proof enough of that, but that fact became especially clear at the Battle of Princeton, where the Continental soldiers Read More
Bestselling Author Nathaniel Philbrick Returns to the Park
New York Times bestselling author Nathaniel Philbrick will appear at Washington Crossing Historic Park (PA) on Wednesday, September 15 at 7 PM for a lecture, Q&A, and signing of his new book, Travels with George: In Search of Washington and His Legacy, which will be released the day before his appearance. Tickets are available now on our website. Ticket price is pay-what-you-wish with proceeds benefiting the non-profit Friends of Washington Crossing Park. Suggested minimum donation is $15 per person. Tickets do not include the new book. You may purchase one copy of the book along with your tickets for an Read More
Full Circle: A Historical Interpreter’s Reflection
By park historical interpreter Thomas Maddock As I led my led my first tour out of the temporary Visitors Center on July of 2009, it was like déjà vu. As I looked out at the Washington Crossing Historic Park, my memory slipped back to the late thirties and early forties. My parents had rented a large wooden house from the State, right on the banks for the Delaware River. My parents had moved to the park in 1935, right after their wedding. I moved in a year later, followed by four siblings. My memories of growing up in the park Read More