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In To Try Men's Souls, New York Times bestselling authors Newt Gingrich and William R. Forstchen cast a new light on the year 1776 and the man who would become the father of our nation, George Washington. Valley Forge picks up the narrative a year after Washingtonâs triumphant surprise attack on Trenton, and much has changed since then.
Itâs the winter of 1777, and Washingtonâs battered, demoralized army retreats from Philadelphia. Arriving at Valley Forge, they discover that their repeated requests for a stockpile of food, winter clothing, and building tools have been ignored by Congress. With no other options available, the men settle down forÂ a season of agony. For weeks the dwindling army freezes under tents in the bitter cold. Food runs out. Disease festers.Â The men areÂ on the point of collapse, while in Philadelphia the British, joined by Allen van Dorn, the Loyalist brother of the dead patriot, Jonathan van Dorn, live in luxury.
In spite of the suffering and deceit, Washington endures all, joined at last by a volunteer from Germany, Baron Friederich von Steuben. With precious few supplies and even less time, von Steuben begins the hard task of recasting the army as a professional fighting force capable of facing the British head-onâsomething it has never accomplished beforeâand in the process he changing the course of history.Â Â Â
Valley Forge is a compelling, meticulously researched tour-de-force novel about endurance, survival, transformation, and rebirth. It chronicles the unique crucible of time and place where Washington and his Continental Army, against all odds,Â were forged into a fighting force that would win a revolution and found the United States of America.
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