I can't believe, that the 5 companies could survive for roughly an hour to an hour 1/2, which is my understanding, and only kill 30 people. Given the battle field movements, as I understand them, and the forces against them, I can't see the men covering these distances, and not done considerable damage. Otherwise they would have been over run immediately, no collapsing flanks, no nothing. In the lore of the early years following the battle, 30 killed may have made sense. But with all the activity archeology has uncovered, there is no way they didn't do more damage. When the camp broke up and went separate ways, every tribe or sub group took their own dead and buried them separately. 30-35 may have been killed in one tribe or sub group, but there is no way for anyone in a battle that stretched over the area it did, for anyone person to get an accurate number of dead, not to mention there is still a fight going on at Reno Hill.
I also read recently, that it was common for entrepreneurs, both of the red and white skinned variety to sell bucketfulls of spent cartridge casings to tourists throughout the 1940's, 50's and 60's, all claiming to have come from "Last Stand Hill."
Perhaps this could explain the reason for the relative lack of spent shell casings found atop LSH that the archaeologists were so totally bewildered over and eventually so damning of the many accepted theories pertaining to the battle. Perhaps those "gentlemen" came to too far quick of a conclusion when dealing with the true, last minutes of "Custer's Last Stand."
I also recall reading that burial parties two days after the battle told of the many US Military Issue, spent shell casings that were found atop LSH and even those from GAC's hunting rifle, found under both his and Brother Tom's bodies.
To amplify on what was already written. "That's where the rag and bone people would hunt for shell casings to sell to tourists and not at Calhoun's or Keogh's positions."
Last Edit: Aug 23, 2008 22:55:01 GMT -5 by johnbryan