Ethel Stanwood Bolton
Much has been written about the American Revolution, but our knowledge of the private soldiers of the patriot army is confined chiefly to Washington's description of their sufferings at Valley Forge. Their story is to be found in a line here and there scattered through the mass of contemporary literature. In sifting this material, it has seemed best to give in every case the name of the authority who saw what he described. No student, however, would willingly forget the labors of those later writers who have done so much to make easier the way for others.
I record with pleasure my obligation to Professor Edward Channing, of Harvard College, for very many valuable suggestions; and also to Mr. Albert Matthews, whose knowledge of the language and customs of the period has been of great service to me.
Pound Hill, Shirley, Massachusetts, July, 1902.
I. The Origin of the Army