Revolutionary War Soldiers: So Cold They Shot Squirrels for Shoes

“He… said that the winter of [1777] was the coldest he ever experienced.” It was so cold “our troops… shot squirrels and drew their skins over their feet for shoes.”

This gripping quote is in the obituary of my cousin John Ludwig Snyder (1746-1860). “He was encamped with [George] Washington at Valley Forge” in 1777 and “said that the winter of that year was the coldest he ever experienced.”

How do we even know about his experience?

We know because it was published in newspapers.

Newspapers, such as GenealogyBank’s Historical Newspaper Archives, record the stories of every day of our ancestors’ lives.

John Snyder’s story is recorded in the Baltimore Sun.

An article about Revolutionary War soldiers, Sun newspaper article 9 April 1860
Source: GenealogyBank, Sun (Baltimore, Maryland), 9 April 1860, page 1

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