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    Description

    Outstanding 1872 Signed Document by George A. Custer as Lt. Colonel of the 7th Cavalry Mentioning Indians and the Battle of Washita Superb D.S. "G.A. Custer" with rank, 1p., 7.75 x 12.5", date stamped June 26, 1872. Document reads, in large part: "I certify on honor that when I took command of the Indian Expedition of 1868 & 9, Capt Wm. Thompson under my immediate command was the owner of two (2) private horses, one a sorrel and the other a dark bay, said to have been obtained from Major Joel A. Elliott each of which was reasonably worth One hundred and Sixty five ($165) dollars. Capt Thompson had both of these horse with him at the battle of the Washita. I T. On the second expedition to the Washita I learned that one of his horses, the Elliott horse as he was called, had given out and was unfit for services. I afterwards learned from Creditable Official Sources, that the horse had to be and was abandoned when Capt. Thompson left under orders for Leavenworth on the 18th of February 1869. The stock of the entire Expedition were without land forage, excepting such dry goods as could be found on the prairies and cotton wood bronse occasionally. Short forage was occasionally scarce and the horses suffered wonderfully from this cause. More than half the horses of the command died and most of them probably from the want of proper forage which the Government could not supply. The Expedition finally left camp at what is now Fort Gile on the 2nd of March 1869 and afterwards arrived at Fort Hays. G.A. Custer Lt Col 7th Cavalry"

    In the 1868 Battle of Washita, Custer had slaughtered all of Chief Black Kettle's Cheyennes along the Washita River. Custer mentions this horrifying battle most casually in this document in relation to horses belonging to one of his officers, Capt. William Thompson. The treaty of 1868, which guarantees the Sioux all the land comprising the western half of South Dakota, was clearly violated when shortly after the treaty was signed, General Sheridan sent Custer with a large complement of troops into the Black Hills to reconnoiter a site for a new fort. The Black Hills were sacred to the Sioux, and Custer's intrusion marked the beginning of the Indian Wars eventually leading to his demise at Little Big Horn and culminating in General Miles' Wounded Knee massacre of the Lakota, the last fighting between white soldiers and Native Americans. Documents signed by Custer as Colonel of the 7th Cavalry have become increasingly difficult to obtain.


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    Auction Dates
    April, 2007
    16th-17th Monday-Tuesday
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