6 Life on the march was tiring and arduous
One of the earliest non-New England units to join the Continental Army outside of Boston was Daniel Morgan’s Riflemen, Virginia marksmen armed with Pennsylvania long rifles. They were recruited from around Winchester, Virginia in the summer of 1775. The initial detachment of just under one hundred men left Winchester on July 14, arriving in Cambridge on August 6, having marched 600 miles across mountainous terrain and poor roads in three weeks, without the loss of a single man. The Continental Army would sometimes move by Durham boats operated by the Marblehead Regiment, as before the Battle of Trenton, or by flat-bottomed boats known as bateaux, as during the assault up the Kennebec River to attack Quebec, but most of the time when it moved it did so on its feet.
While marching the soldier carried most if not all of his personal equipment, which included his musket, ammunition, a bayonet if he was so fortunate to be equipped with one, a haversack in which he carried any spare clothing which he possessed, a blanket, personal items such as a knife and spoon (few had forks), a razor, tobacco if he was so inclined, and any other personal possessions. Few carried any money, as hard money was scarce and Continental paper money was so inflated to be for the most part useless. As with any army some carried contraband as well, playing cards, flasks of rum, food foraged on the march, and the favorite gambling device of the Continental soldier, dice.