Life as a Continental Soldier

We are currently learning about Valley Forge, here are a few quick facts about life as a soldier.

Life as a soldier was boring and difficult. When a soldier was not fighting, he was digging holes for lots of men to use the restroom, clearing fields, building forts or houses for the officers to stay in, guarding the camp, practicing loading their guns, shooting their guns and marching together every day.

Every morning soldiers stood in formation for roll call and every afternoon soldiers got to cook their one meal for the day.  Each man received 1 1/2 pounds of meat, a loaf of bread, and 2 ounces of alcohol (to kill bacteria in their water) per day.

Women and children often would follow a military camp. They were the families of soldiers.  George Washington would not allow unrelated women to follow a camp.

When traveling from battle field to battle field, a soldier carried forty-five pounds of gear.  Gear included a gun with a bayonet, a backpack, tin cup, bowl, spoon, a box of ammunition, canteen, maybe an extra blanket, shirt, or writing equipment.

If a soldier broke a rule he could be punished by being whipped, given more work, or even killed.



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