Author Topic: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.  (Read 3810 times)

Offline smoke

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Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« on: June 05, 2018, 06:25:39 pm »
Howdy all....we are heading west this fall for the great all American road trip and one stop is the Little Big Horn battlefield.  Since I was a little boy I have heard about Custer.....my dad bought me a record about it when I was 5.  I must have played that 500 times as a kid.  :o I have also read a bunch about it over the years and finally I get to visit the Little Bighorn.  

Can you guys recommend some books/reading materials about the battle?  I am especially looking for recommendations that will give me some good familiarity with how things played out on the ground.  In other words when we get there, I hope I will have a good feel for the ground and flow of the battle.  I will have the wife and 2 daughters in tow and want to be able to explain it well to them.

Thanks!
« Last Edit: June 06, 2018, 05:21:13 am by smoke »
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Offline LongWalker

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Re: Custer
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2018, 08:52:47 pm »
Archaeology, History, and Custer's Last Battle: The Little Big Horn Re-examined by Fox. 
In my book a pioneer is a man who turned all the grass upside down, strung bob-wire over the dust that was left, poisoned the water, cut down the trees, killed the Indian who owned the land and called it progress.  Charles M. Russell

Offline smoke

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Re: Custer
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2018, 09:32:58 pm »
Archaeology, History, and Custer's Last Battle: The Little Big Horn Re-examined by Fox. 

Thanks!!  Added it to my Amazon cart.
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Online Sagebrush Burns

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Re: Custer
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2018, 10:12:53 pm »
While you're there it is worth while to do one of the guided tours.  Our was low key, but really knew his stuff.  I've read a fair amount about the battle, but he helped me gain a much better "on-the-ground" perspective and understanding.

Offline smoke

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Re: Custer
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2018, 10:50:34 pm »
Sagebrush...thanks for the tip.  Is there a visitor/ranger station to check in at and find out about the tour?  Are the a private operation?
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Offline Tascosa Joe

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2018, 07:27:00 am »
There is a visitors center, parking is adequate but somewhat limited.  If you are in an RV or travel trailer, find a camp ground near by and drop your rig and go to the battle field in your car or tow rig.  The first time I went, I was pulling a 5th wheel and could not turn around.  I had to pull thru the entire park to the turn around near Reno's defensive position.  There is a farm museum nearby that is almost as interesting as the battlefield.  One thing to remember:  Custer fought the tactics of the time.
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Offline Pitspitr

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2018, 11:33:01 am »
I'd also mention that the Fetterman battle, Hayfield fight, Wagon Box fight sites and Forts C.F Smith, Reno, and Phil Kearney are all relatively near by.

How long will your road trip take? If you're coming back east just before the first of next month, you ought to drop a little south and swing by the Grand Muster.
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Offline smoke

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #7 on: June 06, 2018, 02:42:41 pm »
I'd also mention that the Fetterman battle, Hayfield fight, Wagon Box fight sites and Forts C.F Smith, Reno, and Phil Kearney are all relatively near by.

How long will your road trip take? If you're coming back east just before the first of next month, you ought to drop a little south and swing by the Grand Muster.

Sadly, I cannot make it to the Grand Muster.  We have to be out in MA during that time.  I had planned on being there but my 88 yr old mother is not doing well so we will be there. 

We are heading west from MI around Labor day, hoping to miss the crowds at Yellowstone etc.

I was actually going to do another thread later about what else to see as we swing west.  Thanks for mentioning those.  Are any of the forts active/interactive?  We love that stuff and usually do memberships to things like that(Plimoth Plantation, Fort Michilimackinac,Fort Mackinac etc) so we can go repeatedly.
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Online Sagebrush Burns

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Re: Custer
« Reply #8 on: June 06, 2018, 10:06:11 pm »
Sagebrush...thanks for the tip.  Is there a visitor/ranger station to check in at and find out about the tour?  Are the a private operation?

They are just inside the door at the main visitor center.  Easy to find and easy to arrange.

Offline Pitspitr

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #9 on: June 07, 2018, 06:28:46 am »
Sadly, I cannot make it to the Grand Muster.  We have to be out in MA during that time.  I had planned on being there but my 88 yr old mother is not doing well so we will be there. 

We are heading west from MI around Labor day, hoping to miss the crowds at Yellowstone etc.

I was actually going to do another thread later about what else to see as we swing west.  Thanks for mentioning those.  Are any of the forts active/interactive?  We love that stuff and usually do memberships to things like that(Plimoth Plantation, Fort Michilimackinac,Fort Mackinac etc) so we can go repeatedly.

I forgot to mention the Rosebud Battle site. It's also pretty near the Little Bighorn.

The forts I mentioned are nonexistent today (You can find the site and read the plaque) except for the partially reconstructed Ft. Phil Kearney

Well, If you're going to Yellowstone, I'd go to Cody WY and see the Buffalo Bill Cody Center. (If you do be sure to have the prime rib buffet at the Irma Hotel) Then I'd swing south and visit Ft. Laramie WY, and Forts Robinson, Hartsuff and Atkinson in Nebraska. All four do some living history, but it depends on the weekend how much.

Unless you are taking a really extended trip you might run out of time before you run out of places to visit.  ::)
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Offline smoke

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2018, 06:54:58 am »
We are definitely stopping in Cody WY...prime rib buffet you say :o   ;D

We are planning on being on the road for a couple of weeks at least.  We will hit the Rosebud battlefield.

Thanks for the tips on the other forts.  We should be able to stop at one or 2 of them.

How would you rank them?  Most interesting one?

Thanks!
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Offline Tascosa Joe

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #11 on: June 10, 2018, 07:08:45 am »
The Rosebud battle played a large part in the Custer fight.  In a limited amount of time you have I would put the must see places.

1. Little Big Horn
2. Fort Phil Kearney  (Fetterman)
3. Fort Laramie

The Cody Museum takes a LONG time to go thru if you are interested in American Indian items and guns.  I have spent 2 full days in the gun museum alone.











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Offline Buffalo Creek Law Dog

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #12 on: June 10, 2018, 07:44:09 am »
I read somewhere that the Cody museum is the 3rd ranking museum in the U.S. right after the Smithsonian and a museum in NY that I can't remember the name of.

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Offline smoke

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #13 on: June 10, 2018, 08:16:58 am »
I read somewhere that the Cody museum is the 3rd ranking museum in the U.S. right after the Smithsonian and a museum in NY that I can't remember the name of.



Guggenheim?
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Offline S. Quentin Quale, Esq.

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #14 on: June 10, 2018, 10:00:00 am »
This may not be what you're looking for but the guy who runs this is a good guy and knows what he is about.  I've worked with him a couple of time at at Cavalry Competitions.

http://www.uscavalryschool.com/

SQQ

Offline Pitspitr

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #15 on: June 10, 2018, 11:11:13 am »
Most interesting one?

Thanks!
Ft. Hartsuff, but then I'm prejudiced
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Offline SgtRickHenry

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #16 on: June 10, 2018, 07:16:52 pm »
FYI when walking around at the Custer Battlefield site, one should be mindful of rattlesnakes (the no-legged variety) especially in the grassy areas. Wearing closed toe shoes or maybe boots should be given favorable consideration. One should be particularly watchful in that regard, if accompanied by children or pets.

I thoroughly enjoyed my trip thru there in '98. In retrospect I wish I'd taken one of the tours.  Just wanted some time for reflection but definitely will next time. One can never see everything in a single adventure.  Hope you have a really Great trip.
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Offline Bat 2919

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #17 on: June 10, 2018, 10:14:54 pm »
It sounds like your family enjoys standing buildings and guided tours or living history.  With that in mind I recommend:

1. Ft. Laramie WY, National Park Indian Wars post with plenty of restored buildings

2. Ft. Robinson NE, NE state park, IW Fort with original buildings.  Army's remount depot between WWI and WWII. 

3. Ft. Hartsuff NE, smaller IW post with great buildings, Pitspitr could tell you more about tour info.
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Online Coal Creek Griff

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #18 on: June 10, 2018, 10:38:33 pm »
How far west are you going? Ft. Vancouver in Washington State is worth a few hours. It's a bit early in the westward expansion period but shows how Hudson's Bay Company trading posts operated.  When the living history folks are present, it is very informative.

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Offline Pitspitr

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #19 on: June 11, 2018, 08:19:26 am »
FYI when walking around at the Custer Battlefield site, one should be mindful of rattlesnakes (the no-legged variety) especially in the grassy areas. Wearing closed toe shoes or maybe boots should be given favorable consideration. One should be particularly watchful in that regard, if accompanied by children or pets.

I thoroughly enjoyed my trip thru there in '98. In retrospect I wish I'd taken one of the tours.  Just wanted some time for reflection but definitely will next time. One can never see everything in a single adventure.  Hope you have a really Great trip.
Don't they have most of the battlefield fenced off now?
« Last Edit: June 14, 2018, 09:42:15 am by Pitspitr »
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Offline 1961MJS

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #20 on: June 11, 2018, 01:35:52 pm »
It sounds like your family enjoys standing buildings and guided tours or living history.  With that in mind I recommend:

1. Ft. Laramie WY, National Park Indian Wars post with plenty of restored buildings

2. Ft. Robinson NE, NE state park, IW Fort with original buildings.  Army's remount depot between WWI and WWII. 

3. Ft. Hartsuff NE, smaller IW post with great buildings, Pitspitr could tell you more about tour info.

Hey, we stayed at Fort Robinson in 2000 on the way to Medicine Mountain Scout Ranch.  Camped, the building are for rent, but are pretty high even then.  I loved the whole Western style bacon and egg breakfast.  THICK bacon, Scrambled eggs fried HARD, and buckwheat pancakes that I needed the knife to cut.  Filling would be an understatement.  Nice area.  Crazy Horse was killed there.  Devil's tower was impressive.  Mount Rushmore (the Heads) was NOT what I was used to in a National Park.  It was like a National Park in a Walmart parking lot.  Parking Garage, 10,000 Sq Foot snack bar, and walkway to the heads, then a 10,000 Sq Foot Gift Shop.  Not like the 1970's with a log cabin gift shop with indoor plumbing at each end, one for women, and one for men.

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Offline smoke

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #21 on: June 13, 2018, 08:10:55 pm »
This may not be what you're looking for but the guy who runs this is a good guy and knows what he is about.  I've worked with him a couple of time at at Cavalry Competitions.

http://www.uscavalryschool.com/

SQQ

That is cool!!!

Ft. Hartsuff, but then I'm prejudiced


That might just work out.  I think we will be heading home on I80.

FYI when walking around at the Custer Battlefield site, one should be mindful of rattlesnakes (the no-legged variety) especially in the grassy areas. Wearing closed toe shoes or maybe boots should be given favorable consideration. One should be particularly watchful in that regard, if accompanied by children or pets.

I thoroughly enjoyed my trip thru there in '98. In retrospect I wish I'd taken one of the tours.  Just wanted some time for reflection but definitely will next time. One can never see everything in a single adventure.  Hope you have a really Great trip.

That would suck.....we are taking the dogs.
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Offline smoke

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #22 on: June 13, 2018, 08:17:14 pm »
It sounds like your family enjoys standing buildings and guided tours or living history.  With that in mind I recommend:

1. Ft. Laramie WY, National Park Indian Wars post with plenty of restored buildings

2. Ft. Robinson NE, NE state park, IW Fort with original buildings.  Army's remount depot between WWI and WWII. 

3. Ft. Hartsuff NE, smaller IW post with great buildings, Pitspitr could tell you more about tour info.

Thanks for the info!  Those all look like I am looking for.  I am pretty sure we can hit 2 out of 3.  Maybe all 3 depending on the timing.
It looks like we can stay over in Ft. Robinson?  Eat breakfast?

How far west are you going? Ft. Vancouver in Washington State is worth a few hours. It's a bit early in the westward expansion period but shows how Hudson's Bay Company trading posts operated.  When the living history folks are present, it is very informative.

CC Griff

Not that far but I would love to see a place like that.

Hey, we stayed at Fort Robinson in 2000
"snip"
Later


Thanks for the info on staying over.  I had no idea.
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Offline Pitspitr

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #23 on: June 14, 2018, 09:51:05 am »
Thanks for the info!  Those all look like I am looking for.  I am pretty sure we can hit 2 out of 3.  Maybe all 3 depending on the timing.
It looks like we can stay over in Ft. Robinson?  Eat breakfast?
Yes, you'll need a Nebraska Park entry permit( you can buy them online or at the park) and it's good at all Nebraska State Parks.
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Offline Pitspitr

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Re: Custer, Little Bighorn battlefield visit.
« Reply #24 on: June 14, 2018, 10:00:15 am »
Can you guys recommend some books/reading materials about the battle?  I am especially looking for recommendations that will give me some good familiarity with how things played out on the ground.  In other words when we get there, I hope I will have a good feel for the ground and flow of the battle.  I will have the wife and 2 daughters in tow and want to be able to explain it well to them.

This gives some good info. I have 2 old friends who were on the dig.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rSU_5fKrBcw

Black Elk Speaks is a good reference from the Indian perspective.
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