Ricardo A. Herrera, PhD

Feeding Washington’s Army: Surviving the Valley Forge Winter of 1778

In this major new history of the Continental Army’s Grand Forage of 1778, award-winning military historian Ricardo A. Herrera uncovers what daily life was like for soldiers during the darkest and coldest days of the American Revolution: the Valley Forge winter.

Here, the army launched its largest and riskiest operation—not a bloody battle against British forces but a campaign to feed itself and prevent starvation or dispersal during the long encampment. Herrera brings to light the army’s herculean efforts to feed itself, support local and Continental governments, and challenge the British Army.

Highlighting the missteps and triumphs of both General George Washington and his officers as well as ordinary soldiers, sailors, and militiamen, Feeding Washington’s Army moves far beyond oft-told, heroic, and mythical tales of Valley Forge and digs deeply into its daily reality, revealing how close the Continental Army came to succumbing to starvation and how strong and resourceful its soldiers and leaders actually were.

[Recorded January 12, 2023 and rebroadcast on November 23, 2023]

Feeding Washingtons Army by Ricardo Herrera

History Camp Authors

    America's Summer Roadtrip 2020

      Ricardo Herrera

      Ricardo A. Herrera, PhD, (facebook/rick.herrera.31) is a Visiting Professor, Department of National Security and Strategy, US Army War College and an award-winning historian. He is the author of several articles and chapters on US military history. Before joining the Army War College, Dr. Herrera was Professor of Military History at the School of Advanced Military Studies, US Army Command and General Staff College. A graduate of Marquette University (PhD, 1998) and the University of California, Los Angeles (1984), Herrera was previously a historian on the Staff Ride Team, US Army Combined Arms Center at Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas, and taught at Mount Union College and Texas Lutheran University. He has also served as an armor and cavalry officer in the US Army.

      More on these topics and by these presenters

      More from History Camp