Mt Misery  LbNA # 6195

Placed DateOct 25 2003
LocationValley Forge, PA
Planted ByDoyle's    
Found By the cross-tie walker
Last Found Aug 23 2016
Hike Distance?

Mt Misery

Alive and well as of 1-2-2006

Quickly, he stuffed the scroll of papers under his coat and silently went out the back door. General Washington would never know they were missing, he thought smugly. Once he had become a common sight around the Headquarters, it had been simple to sneak in and take the plans while all the officers were at dinner.

He was eager to meet his British contact and be rewarded for stealing the Valley Forge defense plans. Heading south towards the main intersection of roads, he hurried across and turned towards the bridge that crossed over the Valley Creek. Crossing the creek, he turned left on the first road and headed up the trail. He could tell that many cavalry soldiers had passed recently by the number of fresh horseshoe prints left on the trail. This could be a problem, he thought, the last thing he wanted was to run into any soldiers tonight, of all nights. As he walked along the trail, he made his decision. To be safe, he’d have to take the lesser-traveled, higher trail, up the mountain, past the old spring house. This was necessary, but would delay his meeting with his contact. He hoped the British spy would not be captured while waiting for him.

He was able to slip past the spring house unseen and continued up the rocky path, winding up the side of the mountain. About a third of a mile past the spring house, as he approached the point where the trail merged with another, he heard a commotion from the point where he was to meet his contact. He paused. If his contact had been captured, he would likely confess everything. He leaned against a post next to the trail where people sometimes stopped to write a few notes, wondering what he should do. Suddenly, he heard excited voices coming up the trail towards him. Soldiers! he thought. He could not be found with the papers on him!

Thinking quickly, he noticed a large tree about 20-25 feet from the trail. Glancing at his compass, he saw that the tree was at a reading of 25 degrees from the post he had been leaning on. As he heard the soldiers approaching, he ducked behind the tree, hiding the papers among the rocks there. Hurrying back to the trail, he wondered if he could make his escape and retrieve them at a later time. His answer came as soon as he saw the soldiers. They carried their weapons at the ready, pointed straight at him. “We’ve captured the British spy,” said the Lieutenant in charge, “and he’s told us all about you. Where are the papers?” His heart fell, for he knew there would be no escape. “I’ll never say,” he blurted out. “Then, the rest of your life will be spent in misery,” said the Lieutenant, as they led him away.

Many historians today believe that this is how the location became known as Mt. Misery.

From here, you can retrace your path or continue downhill to the covered bridge and follow a 1.2 mile level hike along Valley Creek back to your starting point.