Skip to comments.Custer's last flag: Little Bighorn banner for sale
Posted on 06/27/2010 7:36:34 PM PDT by Saije
An American flag found at Little Bighorn after Lt Col George Custer and nearly 270 men were wiped out by Indian warriors is expected to fetch as much as £3.3 million when it goes up for auction.
The swallowtail battle guidon of the 7th Cavalry Regiment was the only military artefact left behind after Custer and his men were defeated by thousands of Lakota and Cheyenne Indians, led by Sitting Bull, in June, 1876.***
The victorious Plains Indians had stripped the corpses clean of trophies but evidently missed the flag, which was hidden under the body of a fallen soldier. It was recovered by Sgt Ferdinand Culbertson, a member of a burial party, and was sold for $54 in 1895 to the Detroit Institute of Arts.***
The auction house has estimated it will fetch between $2 million and $5 million (£1.3 million to £3.3 million) but hopes it could even exceed the current auction record for a flag the $12.3 million paid for an American flag captured by the British during a 1779 engagement during the War of Independence.
"It's not a piece of decoration. It's a sacred relic, people died for this flag" said David Redden, a Sotheby's vice chairman.***
The battle was part of the Great Sioux War, which started after the US government tried to drive the Indians out of the Black Hills region in what is now Montana.
The land had been ceded to the tribes in perpetuity but, following the discovery of gold there, the US insisted the Indians move to a reservation.
The 7th Cavalry surprised the Indians, led by Sitting Bull, in their village only to realise they had considerably underestimated the enemy's strength.
(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...
Bad intel, like elections, can have devastating consequences.
Gen. Custer was one of the first to wear an Arrow shirt.
The History Channel many years ago had an Oli Stone tin-foil hat episode where Grant was jealous of Custer so he gave his intel to the Indians and had him whacked..
As Custer said, Where in the hell did all them Indians come from?
I hope it is 0bama saying those words in November.
I’ve been reading and learning more about this battle and the outcome. There’s a large and popular mythology that surrounds these events - much of which was created by Custer’s wife after his death.
Some items for starters:
1. Custer didn’t surprise the Indians. Their picket riders ran into Custer and discovered the size of Custer’s forces. This forced Custer’s hand as he was weighing the prudence of attacking what his Crow scouts were telling him was a large group of Indians.
2. Custer did know that there was a very large number of Indians in the area. His scouts and trackers were telling him this, but he refused to accept their interpretation of the tracks.
3. In the end, what did the 7th in was a failure of leadership. Custer failed to maintain unit cohesion, failed to deal with insubordinate officers under his command and he attacked without having a clear plan communicated to all units.
I personally can’t understand why someone wpuld cough up millions for this artifact.
Your susceptibility to slanderous revisionist history is somewhat explained by your understanding difficulties .
Two good recent books on Custer and the battle - A Terrible Glory by James Donovan, and The Last Stand by Nathaniel Philbrick.
The Black Hills are in South Dakota. The battle was in MT.
if by “slanderous” you mean “research that pops the bubble of those who believe the romanticized version of events,” yep I guess that’s what romantics call it.
The Black Hills do run into MT from SD. Not picking a fight...it’s just geography...The Black Hills National Forest is located in southwestern South Dakota and northeastern Wyoming. You are correct, that the battle happened near the Little Bighorn River near Crow Agency, Montana.
It is my understanding the flag was recaptured by elements of the 4th Cavalry...is this the same flag for sale?
Interesting. Thanks to all posters. BTTT.
I’ve read so much about that battle and I still can’t figure out what Custer’s plan was. I know he thought the indians were aware he was in the neighborhood, which is why he attacked in the middle of the day, but what did he figure Reno was going to accomplish with his little attack. And what was the point in sending Benteen off on a wild goose chase?
Seems the flag is government property and belongs in a military museum.
Read the article after the 4th Cavalry post..no need to respond.
Stone really has no concept of reality.
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