Brethren House - South Campus, Moravian College - Bethlehem, PA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member NorStar
N 40° 37.121 W 075° 22.935
18T E 467667 N 4496498
Quick Description: The Brethren House was used as the general military hospital during the American Revolutionary War and cared for wounded from the battles of Germantown and Brandywine.
Location: Pennsylvania, United States
Date Posted: 9/30/2014 7:25:14 PM
Waymark Code: WMMK1Q
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Outspoken1
Views: 3

Long Description:
In Bethlehem, at the intersection of W. Church St and S. Main St, is the Brethren House on the South Campus of Moravian College, which has a plaque and a sign that states that this building was used as a military hospital during the American Revolutionary War.

The building is on the south side of the intersection, right at the traffic light.

There is a blue PA historical marker right there. Down a passageway between the Brethren House and another building is a plaque mounted on the wall.

The blue sign states:

"Brethren's House
-
Built 1748 by Moravians as house for single men. Early industry center, bell foundry, silkworm culture, other crafts and trades. Military hospital in Revolution. Girls' school from 1815. Now part of Moravian Collage and a museum."

The plaque states:

"In Memory
of the soldiers of the
Continental Army
who suffered and died in this
building used as a military hospital
from
Dec. 1775 to April 1777 and
Sept. 1777 to April 1778
This tablet is erected by
The Pennsylvania Society of
Sons of the Revolution
A.D. 1897."

The building is a multi-story stone building and is among other stone buildings along W. Church Street.

Bethlehem and other area communities such as Lititz became places for field hospitals when the Continental Army was in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Several sources have been found, including an extensive online document was found on archive.org about this. In summary, as the British Army pushed toward Philadelphia to capture the Colonial capital, a location was sought to house the military hospital, then in Morristown, NJ. Bethlehem was selected. At that time, Bethlehem was a community with about 500 people who were Moravians - a sect from the Bohemian area of Europe who were pacifists. They supported the war effort in many other ways, however, including opening several buildings and homes to care for the wounded. Soon came the wounded from battles, including the Battle of Germantown and the Battle of Brandywine. General Marquis De Lafayette was injured in the leg at the latter battle and was tended to in Bethlehem, though one source stated that he stayed at a house rather than this building. Many died over the time that Bethlehem received soldiers and are buried in the city.



Sources:

archive.org (Hospitals at Bethlehem and Lititz during the Revolution):
(visit link)

Bethlehem.org (About Us):
(visit link)

PPL Electric (The Wire):
(visit link)
Address:
West Church Street and S Main Street Bethlehem, PA


Name of War: American Revolutionary War

Type of Documentation: Historic Marker/Interpretive

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