Past Meetings

At our public meeting on Sunday, February 17, 2008 the featured presentation was:


Washington's Great Challenge: Arming the Continental Army in 1777

by Mr. Scott Houting, Museum Specialist, Valley Forge National Historical Park

When the 13 colonies went to war in April 1775, they faced a far superior British Army, considered the finest military force in the world. This superiority was due, in no small measure, to the English government’s “Ordnance System,” centrally controlled from the Tower of London. This organizational structure coordinated the development, manufacture and distribution of weapons for the British Army, and would be emulated by the young nation as it desperately struggled to gain its independence.

This fascinating program explored the influence of these Revolutionary-era British infantry weapons, used by the British Army during the Philadelphia campaign in 1777-78 and throughout the Revolution, on the emerging American military. The presenter, Scott P. Houting, will show examples of the Tower’s weapons, now preserved in the George C. Neumann Collection at Valley Forge National Historical Park.

Mr. Houting with some of the VFNHP's weapons collection — Courtesy Roger Thorne

Scott Houting serves as a Museum Specialist at Valley Forge National Historical Park. He is responsible for the management of the park’s renown military collection of 18th century firearms and memorabilia documenting America’s War for Independence from 1775-1783. A native of Michigan, Mr. Houting arrived at Valley Forge National Historical Park in April 1994. Mr. Houting began his career in 1982 at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., and worked in the office of former President Gerald R. Ford before accepting his current position at Valley Forge.

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