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Book Review
11
Little Big Horn 1876
Little Big Horn 1876 – Custer’s Last Stand
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by: Randy Harvey [ HARV ]


Originally published on:
Historicus Forma

HISTORY

The Battle of the Little Bighorn, also known as the Battle of the Greasy Grass by the Native Americans, was a battle between combined forces of Sioux, Northern Cheyenne and Arapaho Native Americans against the 7th U.S. Cavalry of the United States Army. The battle occurred on June 25 and 26, 1876 near the Little Bighorn River in eastern Montana Territory. It was a great victory for the Sioux, Northern Cheyenne, and Arapaho that were led by great Native American war leaders such as Crazy Horse, Gall and Sitting Bull. The U.S. Seventh Cavalry, a force of 700 men led by George Armstrong Custer, suffered a major defeat. Five of the 7th Cavalry’s companies were annihilated. Custer himself was killed, as were two of his brothers, a nephew, and a brother-in-law. The total U.S. casualty count, including scouts, was 268 dead. The Native Americans casualty count was roughly 30 dead. The Battle of the Little Bighorn has become one of the most famous battles of the Great Sioux War.

** The death of George Armstrong Custer and over half of his 7th Cavalry Regiment in the valley of the Little Big Horn on 25 June, 1876 has become the most celebrated battle of the Indian wars. **

** Author’s words quoted from the back cover of the book.


THE BOOK

Osprey Publications Ltd has released Little Big Horn 1876 – Custer’s Last Stand as Number 39 in their Campaign series. It is a paperback book with 96 pages. Included with the text are black and white and color photographs, maps, black and white and color illustrations and artwork, 3-dimensional ‘bird’s-eye view’ maps, and detailed text and captions. It has a 1995 copyright and the ISBN is 978-1-85532-458-9. As the title states, the book examines and discusses the Little Big Horn 1876 – Custer’s Last Stand.


THE CONTENTS

Introduction

The Warpath To 1876
- Unceded territory
- Uncontrolled Expansion

Plans And Preparations
- Federal Plans
- Powder River Raid

The Opposing Leaders
- Fragmented Command
- Warriors and War Chiefs

The Opposing Armies
- The Indians
- Warrior Societies
- Indian Tactics
- Indian Weaponry
- Cavalry Tactics
- Logistics
- Cavalry Weaponry

Terry And Gibbon
- Gibbon’s Encounters
- Terry’s Advance
- Crook’s Repulse
- Reno’s Scout

Terry’s Plan
- Custer’s Independent Command

The Battle Of The Little Big Horn
- Reno Attacks
- Custer Sends for Benteen
- Reno Panics
- Reno Retreats
- Benteen Arrives
- Advance to Wier Point

Custer’s Last Stand
- Descending The Medicine Tail Coulee
- The Fleeing Village
- Calhoun Hill Collapse
- Keogh’s Position is Overrun
- Escape Attempts
- The End for Custer

The Aftermath
- Terry’s Arrival
- A Failed Campaign
- Sitting Bull’s Defiance

The Battlefield Today

Chronology

Guide To Further Reading

Index


THE TEXT

Richard Hook covers the Battle of the Little Bighorn (Custer’s Last Stand) in 1876 very well. The text in the book has been researched very well and is nicely written and extremely detailed. As with any good reference book it starts with what led up to the battle, the battle and all of the related details and then the aftermath of the battle. I didn’t notice any spelling or grammatical errors as I read through the text. Grammar and spelling might not be an important factor to everyone however it is something that I take notice of and pass on my findings. I feel that if the text is well written then it shows that the author has taken the time to be a professional with their writing. Anyone interested in the Battle of the Little Bighorn, the US 7th Cavalry and the Native American warriors and tribes that were present at the battle or in Native American, western and military history in general will find this book very informative and interesting.

Please refer to the scans that I have provided so that you can judge the text for yourself.


THE PHOTOGRAPHS

There are a total of 62 black and white photographs and 3 color photographs shown throughout the book. The majority of the photographs are nice, clear, centered and focused images and are of a good quality considering the time frames in which some of the older period photographs were taken. Not only will anyone interested in the Battle of the Little Bighorn, The US 7th Cavalry members that were present as well as the Native American warriors that were present at the battle. The photographs will prove to be valuable to the scale figure modeler as well due to the variety of uniforms and weapons shown from both sides of the conflict. There are portrait type photographs of several of the key players on both sides of the conflict. I like to see those portraits included as it lets you see what the individual looked like that the author is describing.

Please refer to the scans that I have provided so that you can judge the photographs for yourself


THE ILLUSTRATIONS

There are 12 black and white and 8 color illustrations shown throughout the book. Most of these are art prints from various artists that show the Battle of the Little Big Horn as well as other incidents of the period. There are brief captions that accompany the illustrations that describe the illustration, what is taking place and the artist of the piece. As with the photographs several of the illustrations will prove to be valuable to the scale figure modeler as well as anyone interested in US Cavalry uniforms and equipment, Native American clothing, weapons, accoutrements and other such helpful details of the Battle of the Little Bighorn in 1876.

Please refer to the scans that I have provided so that you can judge the illustrations for yourself.


MAPS

There are 3, 3-dimensional ‘bird’s-eye view’ maps, 5 regular maps as well as 1 contemporary map drawing during the timeframe of the battle. The maps show specific locations of individuals as well as the locations of the fighting and the names of specific geographic points. The maps are excellent additions to the volume as they help the reader better understand the specific areas discussed during the battle and where in major incidents took place. The maps provide information on the following subjects:

3-dimensional ‘bird’s-eye view’ maps:
- Major Reno’s Rout, 25 June 1876
- Custer’s Advance, 25 June 1876
- The Collapse of Custer’s Command, 25 June 1876

Regular maps:
- Winter Prelude, March-April 1876
- Federal Advance, April-June 1876
- 7th Cavalry Approach
- Campaign Climax, 25 June 1876
- Summer Pursuit, July – September 1876

Contemporary map:
- It shows Custer’s Battlefield in an early attempt to show the lay-out and course of the battle and combatant’s locations.

Please refer to the scans that I have provided so that you can judge the maps for yourself.


THE INFORMATION CHARTS

There are 5 informational charts provided in this volume. The informational charts provide information on the following subjects:
- US Army and Indian Allies, Division of the Missouri, June 1876
- Montana Column, Col. John Gibbons
- Dakota Column, Brig. Gen. Alfred H. Terry
- 7th Cavalry Regiment (Lt. Col. George A. Custer)
- Indian Nations, Northern Plains, June 1865

Please refer to the scans that I have provided so that you can judge the informational charts for yourself.


THE CAPTIONS

The captions that accompany the photographs are well written and are very detailed and provide very specific information in regards to the photograph or illustration that they accompany. As with the text I didn’t notice any spelling or grammatical errors as I read through the captions. As I stated before, grammar and spelling might not be an important factor to everyone however it is something that I take notice of and pass on my findings and I feel that if the text is well written then it shows that the author has taken the time to be a professional with their writing.

Please refer to the scans that I have provided so that you can judge the captions for yourself.


CONCLUSION

I am pleased with the book. This is a very nice reference book that contains nice illustrations, relevant photographs and well written text and captions. I would have no hesitation to add other Osprey titles to my personal library nor would I hesitate to recommend this book to others as it will be a welcome addition to one’s personal military reference library. Anyone interested in the Battle of the Little Bighorn, the US 7th Cavalry and the Native American warriors and tribes that were present at the battle or in Native American, western and military history in general will find this book very informative and interesting will find this volume a useful companion.


REFERENCES

Native American Clothing: An Illustrated History
Theodore Brasser
Firefly Books

Native American Hunting and Fighting Skills
Colin F. Taylor
The Lyons Press

Native American Weapons
Colin F. Taylor
The Lyons Press

The Indians
The Old West
Time/Life Books

The Soldiers
The Old West
Time-Life Books

Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee
An Indian History Of The American West
Dee Brown
Picador

Lakota Portraits
Lives Of The Legendary Plains People
Joseph Agonito
TwoDot

The Great Chiefs
The Old West
Time-Life Books

Warpath
The True Story of the Fighting Sioux
Told in a Biography of Chief White Bull
Stanley Vestal
Foreword by Raymond J. DeMallie
Bison Books

George Turner’s Book of American Indians
True Tales Of Great Warriors
George Turner
Baxter Lane Company

Atlas of the Sioux Wars
Second Edition
Charles D. Collins, JR.
Dr. William Glenn Robertson, Consulting Editor
Combat Studies Institute Press

Lakota Recollections of the Custer Fight
New Sources of Indian-Military History
Compiled and edited by Richard G. Hardorff
Bison Books

Indian Views Of The Custer Fight
A Source Book
Compiled and Edited by Richard G. Hardorff
University of Oklahoma Press

The American Plains Indians
Men-at-Arms 163
Jason Hook
Osprey Publishing

Tribes of the Sioux Nation
Men-at-Arms 344
Michael Johnson
Osprey Publishing

Warriors at the Little Bighorn 1876
Men-at-Arms 408
Richard Hook
Osprey Publishing


Search inside the book at the Osprey Publishing web site: HERE


Look inside the book at the Amazon web site: HERE
SUMMARY
Highs: A nice account of the Little Big Horn (Custer’s Last Stand) in 1876 Nice photographs and illustrations
Lows: Nothing to really mention
Verdict: This is a very nice reference book that is well researched and details the Little Big Horn (Custer’s Last Stand) in 1876 very well.
Percentage Rating
95%
  Scale: 1:1
  Mfg. ID: ISBN 978-1-85532-458-9
  Suggested Retail: US $19.95
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Aug 05, 2012
  NATIONALITY: United States
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 91.62%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 90.22%

About Randy Harvey (HARV)
FROM: WYOMING, UNITED STATES

I have been in the modeling hobby off and on since my youth. I build mostly 1/35 scale. However I work in other scales for aircraft, ships and the occasional civilian car kit. I also kit bash and scratch-build when the mood strikes. I mainly model WWI and WWII figures, armor, vehic...

Copyright ©2019 text by Randy Harvey [ HARV ]. All rights reserved.



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