In the popular imagination, men conducted the Revolutionary War and the Continental Army and its encampments were an all-male environment. Professor Berkin reveals that, in reality, women and children accompanied the army and provided important services to sustain it, including cooking and laundering. The presence of these women decreased desertion and supplied necessary labor, although, as a logistical headache and a potential distraction, it at times frustrated George Washington.
Part 1 of 5: Camp Followers: Wives, Children and Sweethearts of Soldiers (3:46)
Part 2 of 5: Why Washington Did Not Send the Women Home (5:25)
Part 3 of 5: Molly Pitcher: Women as Combatants (3:12)
Part 4 of 5: American Officers’ Wives in Camp (8:02)
Part 5 of 5: British Army Camp Followers and the Baroness de Riedesel (7:35)