Sunday, April 13, 2014

Ford Mansion home to George Washington's former headquarters 1779 to June 1780 by Adrian

The weather has started to warm up for Spring and we decided to drive around and tour Ford Mansion located at Morristown, NJ.  It is about 40 minutes by car from our place. We were there a few years back but it was already closed for the season. If you decide to tour the building, you need to buy the ticket from Washington's Headquarters Museum located behind it.

Washington's Headquarters Museum
Our tour guide started the story by saying imaging having someone just sleep over at your house for a long period of time. So that was the arrangement with the owner of Ford Mansion's Theodosia Ford to have 25 people from George Washington's entourage to stay at the premise for six months. Of course George Washington was paying rent to Theodosia Ford for the entire stay. The location was selected as it was very strategic to George Washington to keep an eye on the British that were occupying Manhattan and Staten Island at that time. He likes the area because it was also defensible terrain, important communication routes and easy access to critical resources.

Our tour guide
The town suddenly being surrounded by 10,000 soldiers and the local residents of 250 were not too happy with so many of them around. It was considered very dangerous as the British can just attack and your life might be caught in between the fight. Or you could be charged for treason to go against the King. The timing was also bad as they arrived in one of the harshest winters in history. The snow was said to be around 10 feet deep. Lots of soldiers suffered extreme cold with insufficient clothing for the winter and limited food. Worse of all, they were not getting paid. Many have deserted the troop and only one third of the soldiers remained at the end of the six months stay.

Study used by George Washington during the war (Only the secretary desk is original and possibly used by him)
Aide-de-Camps Bedroom- General Washington's Aides used this room for sleep and as office space for writing reports
Chamber used by General and Mrs. Washington (Only the mirror is the original)
Campaign beds were used by officers and aides-de-camps during the Revolutionary War
The bed above can be folded and transported all over. It can be used indoor and outdoor just like a tent.
Campaign bed folded and weights 60 lbs and can be drag by a horse.
Servants room (Extra help was always needed as there were too many chores that need to be done to manage a large home)
Xbox or  PlayStation of that time (Mrs Ford's sons toys)
Ford Mansion
George Washington stayed at the Ford Mansion while the rest of the soldiers encamped at Jockey Hollow about six miles south of here. We did not manage to tour the site but we plan to come back again to see how the soldiers live there. I hope you have enjoyed our tour as much as we do. Till next time.

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