Post by benteeneast on Jan 24, 2009 11:04:05 GMT -5
Fred I am reasonably sure they could maintain an 7- 8 mph trot speed for an extended period of time terrain permitting. It is the gallop (canter) that I have trouble with. It takes a lot more energy per mile to maintain the military gallop.
I'd also note here that Doran has Custer/Reno pursuing this small fleeing NA village down Reno creek that had been sighted by Varnum and his Rees from the Crow's nest. (and Doran has the battalion halt at 10 minutes, by the way)
That indicates to me a very fast pace. A fleeing village could only indicate that they had spotted the soldiers and would go down and warn the mail village. Custer would think this and then proceed at a very fast pace.
And you know well the terrain going down Reno creek isn't all that bad. 1. Down hill. 2. Contains wide flat areas for movements. 3. Only choke points were the creek crossings which weren't deep or very wide with maybe a marshy flood plain adjoining.
I believe Fred's picture above is representative of the creek and adjoining terrain for most of the Reno creek area.
I don't think we have too much of the up and down ridge crossing for Reno's movement from the divide and Custer didn't incur much until moving up Mathey's knoll, Sharpshooter, and beyond. Benteen got into some on his leftward movement.
Looking at affect on horses:
Benteen incurred the worst terrain but probably didn't preceed at as fast a pace as Custer and Reno so similar affect on the horses as Reno.
Reno incurred the least terrain problems without any great affect on the horses to affect his charge.
Custer went down Reno creek at the same pace as Reno so until his turn to the north, his horses were in the same shape as Reno. After that, Custer going up to Mathey's knoll, along sharpshooter ridge, cedar coulee, to MTC with all the up and down riding would probably be enough to decide a rest at MTC would be a good thing. Even if Custer was trying to maintain a fast trot or gallup going to MTC, the uphill terrain would still slow down the speed/mph factor.
Also have to factor in the accordian affect from the creek crossings going down Reno creek. A hesitation at the front of the column at a crossing will cause a slamming on the brakes at the rear and then after crossing, the rear is galluping faster to catch up. Same affect when driving down the interstate upon an accident. Slow down to a crawl/stop till you get to the accident, a little hesitation and rubbernecking at the accident scene to negotiate through it, and then speed up to catch up. The jam up at beginning of an accident approach always takes longer than the exit and then as you are driving through the scene you wonder why this caused such a jam up back there.
It would be hard to apply an mph factor to creek crossings, the morass, etc. Really just need to ride the whole thing and see.
If we would compare Custer's movement down Reno creek to his movement from Girard's knoll going north to the LSH area, the latter movement would take much more time.
For those wanting to apply Gray's timelines and various watch annotations to this, well forget it, cause those times still don't account for another hour to almost two hours of dawdling on the Reno hill area. Main thing is to look at the natural movements and then develop a timeline.
Keogh, I'd think anywhere between 1 1/2 to 2 hours is a good estimate and I'd lean towards an earlier time.
The thing about the pack train is that it started out 20 minutes after the regiment had started to cross the divide, which means that none of it had crossed by the time the battalions had started down Ash Creek, at their supposed rapid rate of speed, which supposedly took Reno to Ford A in an hour and forty minutes, or thereabouts [supposedly].
How did the pack train manage to get within a mile and a half, or so, of Reno's first hilltop position in about two hours and twenty minutes [Reno being in the valley for, say, an hour and a half] from its own crossing of the divide, especially considering the fooforah at the morass, and the halt to close up. One is now down to about 2 hours, meaning that they traveled at an average speed of somewhere north of 4 MPH, which to me seems rather doubtful.
I don't happen to agree with Gray on his times, either, but I do agree with him that one has to be able to intersect events with the timeline adopted, and have it make sense.
If Varnum and the Rees saw a village on Ash Creek, why did they not mention it in any of their accounts, or in Varnum's case, his testimony?
Gordie. 4 mph for the packtrain doesn't sound out of the ordinary. They did for the most part keep of with the command all the way from the Powder river depot. The also took a shortcut that Benteen did not. After one or more messages, they did quicken their pace and at some point try to get to Reno hill in a hurry.
Doran's sources as indicated in his book with the narative at pages 59 to 68:
Hammer's Lilly library collection 806 & 807 citing W. M. Camp and Capt. Polland's report on Little Wolf at Ash Creek. Pollard was at Standing Rock reservatio and interviewed returning hostiles/summer roamers.
He also cites Nichols, the RCOI, and pages 84 and 181. (I don't know if these are Nichols pagination or RCOI pagination) This is where he states Pollard's account is supported by Girard usage of the word "town" to describe a small band of Indians that he saw "running" down Ash Creek when Girard was on a small knoll near the lone tepee.
The Indians reported they remained hidden in the timber near the mouth of Lower Ash creek while the army passed by them on both sides. Doran suggests that this the "town" as seen by Girard.
He mentions the Arikara lone tepee (LT #1)(about 3/10ths mile west of the South Fork) as a place of an abandoned tepee which some of Varnum's Rees counted coup on the cover and entered and ate some food stores found there. Doran suggests that this family lodge accounts for the sudden disappearance of the scouts and is most likely part of the village seen at the Crows nest.
He cites the "Search for the Lone Tepee" book by Ray Meketa and Thomas Bookwalter published in 1983 which identifies the Crow's lone tepee/burial lodge (LT #3) north/northwest of the Rees lone tepee (LT #1) with the LT3 opposite of and being on the right bank of Middle Ash Creek about halfway between the south fork ford and the Hartung morass. He then identifies a Crow observation point on a high point of a ridge overlooking the Big Flat further north from the LT3 and just adjacent to and west of what he/the Crows calls the White Rocks area. This is where Bouyer and 4 of his 6 scouts diverted to. The found the LT3 on their return.
Doran has Girard and Luther Hare riding up to a small double knoll Girard's knoll # 1 located 3/10ths of a mile west of Hartung morass. This is where Doran has Girard yelling at Custer, "Here are your Indians, running like hell(devils)". Doran has Mister Hare sending a written note to Custer that Indians are now in the front from here. Doran then suggests that these were the same fleeing Indians with the small village that had just fled from the White Rocks & Ree Lone tepee (LT1) area. Doran states that this is the same area earlier in the morning where Mister Varnum and and his Ree scouts said they had seen at least two lodges and pony herds citing Nichols, RCOI, page 112. (not sure which page this is).
After all this is where Doran has Custer having Reno pursuing the NAs and telling Reno he will support him. This all later changes when they get to Girards Knoll # 2 with the main village siting as well as receiving Varnum's report that he Varnum had seen the village downstream in the lbh valley. Varnum's report was about 20 minutes after his actual siting from a high point south east of Middle Ash Creek. Citing Graham, The Custer Myth, page 17.
Gotta go watch KU. No time to look at those cites and I don't have Graham anyway.
Post by benteeneast on Jan 24, 2009 14:29:04 GMT -5
Thanks and I see your point. I believe you are correct and the packtrain timeline (range) puts a constraint on others. So the theories must be consistent with all timeline ranges regardless of the actual time of day.
I want to look at other accounts leading up to this time regarding the packtrain and how long it would take to get into camp after the lead had stopped.
I also believe that the pack train arrived at Reno Hill much later that what some of the book authors use in their timelines. Which is also why Custer had more time in the lsh sector than and Reno was on Reno Hill longer than many timelines say.
There is too much reliance on trying to correlate watch times and with ammo mules being sent ahead of the others, the reported pack train arrival accounts don't really account for the beginning of the ammo mules, the end of the ammo mules, the beginning of the pack train remainder, and then finally the last mule of the remainder. All this times in relation to a pack train that was strung out anywhere from a 1/4 to a mile in length. Then they unload some and resupply with ammo.
A slow pack train doesn't affect the Custer movement that much and in fact supports the entire battle (Divide to return to Reno Hill) lasted much longer than Gray and others suggest.
This so-called smaller village along Reno Creek has me baffled, as well. I've gone through Varnum's work 100 times and there's no reference to it. It was also never mentioned by anyone in the various RCOI testimonies. Godfrey doesn't mention it in his 1892 work, nor does Benteen mention it in anything he wrote to Goldin. You would think if they chased Indians down Reno Creek, Kanipe would have at least had a hand in it, or certainly Martini would have had to bring someone a note, even if it was Keogh or Yates!!
Is the Indian account another Kanipe-Goldin-Korn-Martini "I was there" account? I guess I have to read Doran, finish The Arikara Narrative, and maybe hunt for some more. Again, I wouldn't belabor the point about multiple "lone tepees," but none other than the one by Gerard's Knoll is of any consequence: certainly no more so than any one of the abandoned village sites along the Rosebud. Looking for tepees has been a rather dumbing exercise in futility... kinda like counting the burial lodges on the 28th. Of course, my minutiae interests may be different than someone else's.
As for the packs' speeds, Benteen said his scout took him about 1 1/2 hours and the packs were within sight when he hit the main trail. That being the case, you can figure the packs reached the morass-- where, according to McDougall and Mathey they did not stop-- while Custer & Crew were still somewhere in the "flats," maybe as much as 40-45 minutes before Reno dismounted in the LBH valley. If the morass in question is the one between No-Name Creek and South Fork, it is somewhere around 5 to 5 1/4 miles from the LBH. It is also some 7 miles from the divide to that same morass, so if the packs crested the divide, they were within shouting distance of water in about 90 minutes, a 4 to 5 mph gait, not bad for rabble.
This is one of the problems with citations, that I have mentioned several times on various threads - they may not say what the author claims they say. The Captain at Standing Rock was Captain Poland, not Pollard, and he did not report anything about Little Wolf. He wrote two reports that are germane to the LBH, one in which he discusses the actual number of lodges present [after counting them], and one in which he reports the return of Kill Eagle and his band from LBH.
In his testimony before the RCOI, Gerard stated that the ponies, lodges and etc. that he saw and was referring to were ACROSS the LBH, on the west side [Casey Stengel], not running down ASh Creek.
Little Wolf was a chief of the Northern Cheyennes [there was also a Lakota of that name, wko had no status other than being a warrior, and who was killed, maybe, at LBH]. Little Wolf's scouts discovered Custer moving up the Rosebud, and Little Wolf dropped in behind the cavalry column, at a distance, of course, and followed it all the way along to LBH, arriving in the valley AFTER the fights. He was, in fact, humiliated to a certain extent by the Lakotas when he arrived. He may or may not have sent word on ahead,m and there is some speculation that a couple of the Indians who were watching Custer's command at the Crows Nest area were messengers from Little Wolf - who also stayed behind the troops and did not deliver the message.
I have been through all of the Camp material known to exist, i.e. that with public access for research purposes [and some that isn't], and I have seen nothing that would contradict what I have written above relative to Little Wolf. There may be something somewhere - I do not pretend to know everything.
As to the mules keeping up with the command - The mule train was not "organized" until the command reached the Powder River, and it was a fiasco from day one, Reno apparently had little problem with it, except that he wore a bunch of the mules out, even while not moving rapidly, due to the nature of the country he covered on his scout. After the regiment started up the Rosebud on 22 June, the train lagged badly, despite the reasonably frequent halts along the way for meals and etc. It often, if not always, straggled into camp an hour or an hour and a half behind the rest of the command. It was hardly capable of maintaining a 4 MPH march rate for ant appreciable distance, as that is what the regiment was marching at up the Rosebud. Look at the start and stop times in the record, and the various accounts.
The speed of the train has, as you point out, nothing whatever to do with Custer's marches down Ash Creek and over to MTC - but it has to be a factor in determining Benteen's rate and distance of march, and his juncture with Reno; the train's arrival on the hill; and hence Reno's arrival at Ford A [and timing of subsequent actions].
Everything [except possibly Custer's actions, to an extent] is interwoven, and it is important to get it so that events known to have occurred are not excluded by one's time-line. This is where Gray had the right approach, but not necessarily the right conclusions, otherwise we'd a;; just agree with him, and move on. But he was wrong in many respects.
Sorry to be so long-winded about this, Britt, and I hope you don't think that I am picking on you, or "talking down" [which I have been accused of doing] either, because that was not my intent - merely to correct the record, which I hope that I have done, but would not be terribly surprised to learn that I hadn't.
Gordie, Not to worry, you are not thought of as picking on me. I'm just the (poor) messenger reporting what I've read in Doran. He does have incredible detail regarding the terrain listing old lodge pole trails, 1930-50 old auto road up by Girard's second knoll, through the Marshy place, Mathey's knoll, and on to Reno hill that used to be used by tourists (maybe even Gordie), the ranch landing strip, local landowner info, etc.
My spelling error, to be corrected, not Pollard, he calls the Captain Polland(Polland with a double L may be his spelling error). The reference in the bibliography was to a story in the Hammer Lilly collection citing Camp and his (notes?) saying Polland's report on Little Wolf. My mistake to look at the name of the cite and then say "apparently Little Wolf was camped there and chased down the creek". That was just a mistaken assumption by me to which I shall remove. My bad and my apology for adding that. To clarify this, NO WHERE on pages 57 and 58 of Doran's book does he say Little Wolf or that this was Little Wolf or his followers at this small village, he in fact does just say this referring to Polland's report: "His report strongly suggests the possibility of a small band of reservation Indians having been camped on Ash Creek by the mid-afternoon of the day of the Custer Battle; they would have almost been run over by the army soldiers." I guess you can blame me for paraphrasing things and then listing the cite without fully explaining it but then you just asked for the cites. You will notice also that Doran says "strongly suggests" whatever that means.
The thing to do would be to look at Poland's report and Camp's notes on it. I believe his report was posted on one of the boards at one time cause I remember reading something by him.
My bad for paraphrasing and then not clarifying the citation and your bad for shooting down a citation which you have not read to compare to Doran. To do that you would need Doran's book and this report from the Hammer Lilly Camp collection. I don't have the report so I can just try to say the gist of what Doran is saying as I can't type his book word for word. I thrown out this "gist" (and maybe not a very good gist) so everyone can be aware of it being out there and comment on. I did not provide the detail or the report for a fine toothed comb review.
I still have to look at those cites in the RCOI. I will look at Girard's testimony for the words "across the lbh, on the west side, not running down Ash Creek" as you state they are in there regarding the village. If those are Girard's exact words then maybe its time to toss the Doran book away. Right now I don't know. I hope we are not both paraphrasing Girard's testimony and applying the wrong context and interpretation. When I find it, I will post it word for word. Who knows, maybe it is not all that explicit and subject to interpretation.
I try to stay out of spelling controversies also. (and we all know the poor editing and spell checking done on the Doran book). I say Girard with an i because the RCOI official record spells it that way. Doran and many others say Gerard with an e. Doesn't matter to me as long as we know who we are talking about. I don't take the time to edit and spell check my own posts. I have a bad habit of changing thought and then "person" mid sentence and mid paragraph and don't always catch it.
I'm not sold on Doran or anybody else's theories, it just happens to be the only one I've read and have in front of me with the explicit details of the movement down Reno Creek. It also includes maps and details that are not on any thing else available. Without it, I'd just be another dummy reading and with nothing to write. And with nothing to write, I'd probably lose interest. I don't have and have not read all the books the rest of you have. I'm just shooting blanks from the hip here. This is the first I've heard that Doran's small village is not a commonly known item. It all appears to lead to his theory regarding what Custer meant by telling Reno he would support him. Maybe Doran is the lone ranger on this, I don't know.
Another thing that does bug me about the Doran book is that with all his horsemanship talk, his personal horsemanship and reenacting experience, his many travels up and down all the terrain, etc., no where does he say I personally rode my horse down this terrain and this is what I personally experienced and this is how long it took me and my horse to do it. Kinda what I bought it for to start with.
I would sure be interested in receiving a very discreet copy of your chapter(s) on this for comparison. Remember last year I offered to be the first one to write you a check for a book sight unseen and publication date unknown, if ever. Offer still stands. Will even do a little editing or make that spell checking at the same time.
If Varnum and the Rees saw a village on Ash Creek, why did they not mention it in any of their accounts, or in Varnum's case, his testimony?
I don't really know. I haven't read all the accounts about what happened at the crow's nest or Varnum's testimony. Probably a question for Doran. He states at page 60 of his book "It now appears that this may be the same encampment seen from the Crow's nest on the morning of June 25." (sounds vaguely familiar to me though) At the end of the first paragraph on page 62, about Girard's first knoll, Doran states "Is it possible that what Hare and Gerard were seeing were the same small village that had just fled from near the White Rocks area? This was the same area earlier in the morning where Mister Varnum and the Ree Scouts said they had seen at least two lodges and pony herds. M71, pg.112." M71 is his reference to Nichols RCOI. I guess we have to look at page 112 of the RCOI. I'll do that and come back and edit this post.
Doran talks later on about Varnum's village that Varnum sighted further down Reno/Ash creek which was Sitting Bull's Hunkpapa village camped at the mouth of the Shoulder Blade creek camp area across the lbh. It was another 25 minutes before he caught up with Custer to report it to him. I do take note of those facts though. I hope I didn't miss-paraphrase things again. If the literature and the RCOI doesn't indicate that Varnum or the Rees or anyone saw a camp from the Crow's nest, then time to toss the Doran book for sure.
Further on from the testimony which Steve has so kindly posted, while Gerard was being examined by Reno's counsel, Lyman Gilbert, the following exchange took place:
Q. Where was that? A. It was very close to the lodge where the dead Indians were. Q. What was the character of that land? A. To the right it was a broken country. It was a small hill 20 or 25 feet higher than where the lodge was standing, and a short distance from it. Q. From that point, where did you see the Indians, on which side of the river? A. There was where I first saw the Indians to say I knew they were Indians. In the morning I had seen them from the mountain top where Lieutenant Varnum was. That is, I saw a large black mass moving, which I supposed to be Indians and ponies. Q. Where were the Indians at the time you saw them from that little hill? A. They were down in the bottom of the Little Big Horn River. Q. How far down the valley were they, and on which side of the river? A. I should say over three miles from where we were, and I judged them to be on the left bank of the river [across the Little Horn].
I usually do not cite page numbers, since I copied the original by hand, and then typed it out, as I constructed the Appendices to the book. I did not copy page numbers, and indeed do not remember if there were any on the original. Subsequently, I lost most of the typed transcripts, and have had to go back and redo them. I just finished Moylan today.
Hare, along with Bouyer, the Crows and a few Rees, had been out to the right in advance of the battalions marching down Ash Creek. He sent several messengers back to Custer, which is why he had the Rees with him, but there is no record of any note from him to Custer. The group with Bouyer spent a deal of time atop the "chalk buttes" during the morning and were looking at some of the camps through field glasses. You might very well ask yourself why they would need to use glasses to see a camp that was immediately below them. Hare came in and reported to Custer, with Bouyer and the Crows very near the Lone Tipi site [let's call it LT # 56, so as not to confuse anyone].
There are notes in the Camp Manuscripts deposited in the Lilly Library, U of Indiana. Dr. Kenneth Hammer was good enough to transcribe the notes of an interview with Little Wolf, conducted on the Northern Cheyenne Rez in 1918. These snippets are from Hammer's typescript [the original notes are faded, extremely delicate, and often barely readable]. Pages 600 and something to 600 and something plus one [It is very short]. "When Custer was first seen, he was opposite Ford B in MTC, traveling parallel with the river, soldiers deployed and seemingly trying to circle the camp............Little Wolf says his people sent for Little Wolf to come and fight, and he came and was intending to talk to them against fighting, but Custer beat him there. When Sioux heard this, they were very angry and threatened to kill him.........." Others might find this interesting also, which is why I post it here.
I do not have your mailing address, but if you PM or Email me it, I will be glad to send you the chapter on Custer's and Reno's March down Ash Creek, which strangely enough is titled something like that. This will be for your personal use only, and not to be disseminated to anyone else. I don't mind sharing info on these forums, but, as I've often stated, I do not like doing others' research and work for them.
I do not have finished chapters except that one; one covering Benteen's March; one covering Custer's march from North Ash Creek to and across MTC; one covering the happenings on the bluffs after Reno's arrival there until the retreat back to where they came from; one covering the pack train and the messengers; and about half of Reno in the valley. I generally try to get all my ducks in a row, before embarking on writing a chapter. I hate doing re-writes - hell, I hate writing, period; but I'm old and decrepit, and it helps me pass the time, and pretend I'm doing something constructive. And that ain't no LOL.
PS When Varnum saw the tops of lodges in the bottom, he had no idea of whose they were - it is only because later scholarship has indicated that they were the Hunkpapa lodges, that anyone can afix the name Sitting Bull to them. Varnum saw these from a vantage point some distance to the left of the trail being followed by the battalions, and nearly down to the valley. He returned from this point when he saw that he had been deserted by the Rees who had been along with him, and was alone with his orderly. When he got back and reported to Custer, it all started coming together, or falling apart, depending on your point of view.
Last Edit: Jan 25, 2009 0:22:11 GMT -5 by biggordie
Thanks Gordie. I looked at a bunch of the RCOI testimony, but not all, of Girard and Varnum and Wallace and the snippits seen so far don't mention anything about the two lodges, etc. Maybe its there somewhere. Your ps account with Varnum and the deserting Rees does coincide with Doran but I don't know either one of your sources for that. Regarding Girard's testimony you and B East posted and I found also, Doran had placed that as happening further up the creek (and without a paddle I might add).
Maybe this small village chase down Reno creek is a bunch of hooey. I don't know. Doran's best work is with the terrain, trails, movements, and horse cavalry matters. He, like others, has taken certain details and molded them into his own tactical plan. He relies a lot on Camp and some guy I've never heard of, John Stands in Timber, as his main sources.
Regarding the Hammer, Lilly, Capt. J. S. Poland issue. I'm not sure how many letters are out there but I found the one I posted over a year ago on the other board. There may be more by Poland and I'm guessing there may be one by Poland who interview Little Wolf in 1876. Anyway here is the one I have.
For discussion sake, I will post the letter here for everyone to follow:
Letter from Captain John S. Poland to the Assistant Adjutant General of the Department of Dakota in Saint Paul, Minnesota, which gives an account from seven Sioux Indians of Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer's defeat at the Battle of the Little Bighorn on June 25, 1876.
Headquarters USA Military Station
Landing Rock Dakota Territory July 24, 1876
To the Assistant Adjutant General
Department of Dakota
Saint Paul Minnesota
I respectfully report the following as having been derived from seven Sioux Indians just returned from the hostile camp (July 21st) some of whom were engaged in the battle of June 25th with the Seventh cavalry.
The agent of course makes no distinction between them and the other Indians at the agency. He sent them word to keep quiet and say nothing. To the other Indians he sent or delivered personally the instruction that they must not tell the military of the return of Indians from the hostile camp, nor circulate reports of the operations in the late fight.
The Indian account follows: The hostile were celebrating their greatest of religious festivals – the Sun dance – when rumors brought news of the approach of cavalry. The dance was suspended and a general rush, mistaken by Custer, perhaps, for a retreat – for horses equipment and arrows followed. Major Reno first attacked the village at the south end and across the Little BigHorn. Their narrative of Reno’s operations coincide with the published accounts how his men were quickly confronted, surrounded, how he dismounted, rallied on the timber, remounted and cut his way back over the ford and up the bluffs suffering considerable loss, and the continuation of the fight for some little time, when runners arrived from the north of the village, or camp with the news that the cavalry had attacked the north end of the river, three or four miles distance.
The Indians about Reno had not before this shown the slightest integration of fighting at any other point. A force large enough to prevent Reno from assuming the offensive was left and the remaining available force flew to the other end of the camp where finding the Indians there successfully driving Custer before them, instead of uniting with them they separated into ten parties and moved around the flanks of his cavalry. They report that he crossed the river but only succeeded in reaching the edge of the Indian camp. After he was driven to the bluffs the fight lasted perhaps an hour. Indians have no hours of the day, and the time cannot be given approximately.
They report that a small number of cavalry broke through the line of Indians in their rear escaped, but was overtaken, within a distance of five or six miles and killed. I infer from this that this body of retreating cavalry was probably led by the missing officers and that they tried to escape only after Custer fell.
The last man that was killed by two sons of a Santee Indian "Red Top" whom was a leader in the Minnesota massacre of ’62 and ‘63.
After the battle the squaws entered the field to plunder and mutilate the dead.
A general rejoicing was indulged in and a distribution of arms and ammunition hurriedly made. Then the attack on Major Reno was vigorously renewed.
Up to this attack the Indians had lost comparatively few men, but now they say their most serious loss took place. They give no ideal of numbers but say there was a great great many. Sitting Bull was neither killed nor personally engaged in the fight. He remained in the counsel tent directing operations. Crazy Horse (with a large band) and Black Moon were the principal leaders on the 20th June. Kill Eagle, Chief of the Blackfeet at the head of some twenty lodges left the agency about the last of May. He was prominently engaged in the battle of June 25 and afterwards upbraided Sitting Bull for not taking an active personal part in the engagement. Kill Eagle has sent me word that he was forced into this fight, that he desires to return to the agency and that he will return to the agency if he is killed fir it. He is reported actually on the way back to get his father. The agent and make confession to receive absolution for his defiant actions against the hand that has gratuitously fed him for three years. He is truly a shrewd chief, who must have discovered that he who fights and runs away may live to fight another day.
The Indians were not all engaged at one time, he says reserves were held to replace loses and renew attacks unsuccessfully. The fight continued until the end of day when runners, kept on the look out for other units reported a great body of troops (General Terry’s column) advancing up the river.
Lodges having been previously prepared for a move retreated in a southerly direction followed towards and along the base of the mountains. They marched about fifty miles, went into camp and held a consultation where it was determined to send to all the agencies reports of this success and to call upon them to come out and share the glories that were expected in the future. Therefore we may expect an influx of overbearing and imprudent Indians to wage by force perhaps, a succession to Sitting Bulls demands.
There is a general gathering in the hostels camp from each of the agencies on the Missouri River, Red Cloud and Spotted Tails, as also a great many northern Cheyenne and Arapahos.
They report for the benefit of their relatives here that in the three (3) fights they have had with the whites they have captured over 400 stand of arms, carbines and rifles (revolvers not counted) and ammunition without end, sugar, coffee, bacon. And hard bread. They claim to have captured from the whites this summer, over 900 horses and mules. I suppose this includes operations against soldiers, crow Indians and Black Hills miners.
The general outline of this Indian report coincides with the published reports. The first attack of Reno began well on the day say the Indians. They report about 300 whites killed. They do not say how many Indians killed.
A report from another source says the Indians obtained from Custer’s command 592 carbines and revolvers.
I have since writing the above heard the following from the returned hostile. They communicated as a secret to their friends here the information that a large party of Sioux and Cheyenne were to leave Rosebud reservation, or the hostile camp for this agency, to intimidate and compel the Indians here to join Sitting Bull and if they refused, they are ordered kill soldiers there and steal there ponies. Of course any attempts by the military or whites will provoke an attack upon the post, although that secret, or so much of it has not been revealed to friends of the hostile.
I shall report any additional news received from reliable Indian sources as soon as obtained.