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    Description

    George A. Custer Autograph Endorsement Signed "Gen G. A. Custer" on U.S. Army Document in the third person. One page, 7.75" x 11.25", manuscript post expense account document, February 26, 1875, Bismarck, D.T. A rare item, an accounting of telegrams sent to various points by General G. A. Custer starting on September 1, 1874, and continuing through January 13, 1875, totaling $55.41. Custer has written at the bottom: "Bismarck D. T./ March 3rd 1875/ Rec'd from Gen. G. A. Custer ($55.41) fifty five dollars 7 41/100 in full of all dues to this office on public or private account to date." Handsomely matted with a Custer image to an overall size of 22" x 17.5".

    In September 1874, following his military expedition into the Black Hills, General Custer announced that gold had been discovered in the Black Hills, a part of the Sioux reservation which was off-limits to non-Sioux. Custer's announcement launched a gold rush into the reservation which set up the Battle of Little Bighorn in June 1876. The telegraphs recorded in this ledger likely include those sent by Custer announcing the discovery of gold.

    At the bottom of the page is the signature of the famous telegraph operator John Mitchell Carnahan (1849-1938). On July 5, 1876, only sixteen months after this document was signed, Carnahan spent twenty-one hours telegraphing official news of Custer's disastrous defeat and death at the Battle of Little Bighorn. Carnahan sent a total of 80,000 words at a cost of $3,000. He signs this document "Jn. M. Carnahan" 1.5" below Custer's signature.

    In 1872 two companies of the 6th U. S. Infantry built Fort McKeen opposite Bismarck Dakota Territory. This famous infantry post's name was changed to Fort Abraham Lincoln in late 1872 and expanded to include a cavalry post consisting of six companies. They included 78 permanent structures at the fort, for example, a post office, telegraph office, barracks, etc. By 1873, the 7th Cavalry moved into the fort to protect the construction of the Northern Pacific Railroad. The first post commander of the Fort was Lieutenant Colonel George A. Custer, who held the position until his death in 1876.

    Condition:
    Very good-fine, has some chipping left middle of document.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2009
    23rd-25th Friday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 4
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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