The largest building on the tour of Valley Forge National Park is a private site the Washington Memorial Chapel, begun in 1903. Its dominant characteristic is its two matched sets of dazzling stained glass windows, one depicting the life of Jesus Christ, the other the life of George Washington. "Washington in prayer at Valley Forge is seen in the central opening over the door," explains the handout given to visitors. Next to a bush, the general kneels in prayer to Almighty God, seeking God's assistance when it seemed only He could rescue our troops, starving and freezing at Valley Forge. The prayer story derived from none other than Parson Weems, promulgator also of the cherry tree myth. Actually, Washington never prayed for God's aid, and for that matter, the troops were never starving or freezing at Valley Forge. In addition to the chapel, Washington also kneels in prayer in bronze at the nearby Freedoms Foundation, in a painting in the Valley Forge Historical Society Museum, and on stamps issued by the United States Postal Service for the 150th and 200th anniversary of the 1778 non-event.
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