Kanipe's Ride to the Pack Train Aug 4, 2010 6:28:18 GMT -5
Post by fred on Aug 4, 2010 6:28:18 GMT -5
Why? He had two experienced officers taking care of things back there. That's why God made messengers!, and according to one idiot, anyway, on this board, he made good use of two of them. The only things Custer was concerned about were Indians running away and Reno doing what was expected of him. A side-trip to SSR is a crock... and according to all you "Charles Murray-Bell-Curve Specialists," more indicative of an "infantryman" than the fabled "hussar"! [Has anyone thought to include MPs or QM people in this discussion?]
SSR was the first high ground he came to and would have given him the best view to spot the general location of his pack train and the Benteen battalion.
So? Just more time-wasting; they were miles away and their dust plumes would have revealed all Custer needed to know.
From there he could also look down into the valley to check on Reno.
I reiterate... too far away! As a commander... and especially one of Custer's ilk... the closer the better. Does anyone think for one moment that I climbed a tree to hear the gunfire or see the action down the road when I was in Vietnam? Or do you think maybe I kicked my driver in the ass and told him to go there, to get into it, close, closer, closest! A trip to Sharpshooters' Ridge was both unnecessary and a waste, a needless side-trip.
From the top of SSR, he would have also spotted hill 3411 and ridden to it to get a better view of the valley fight.
Bill, I am surprised at you. This is just plain silly. "3411" is not a "hill"; it is a simple rise sloping up from lower ground to the south and sloping down to lower ground to the north. Even the topo map indicates that by not including a high point, i. e., an "x," at that location. It is a mere number.
You have Custer arriving on the bluffs around 1:40 pm and hanging around up there until DeRudio allegedly spots him looking down from 3411 at about 2:05 pm. I do not believe Custer spent anywhere near 25 minutes atop those bluffs watching the Reno fight, which is why I dismiss the DeRudio sighting as a misidentification. By 2:05 pm, Custer is already down in MTC...
Now you're taking my work and pulling it out of the context I put it in and using it against me. Nowhere have I ever said Custer spent anything close to 25 minutes atop any bluff watching Reno. Nowhere! Eight minutes, max!
I also find your dismissal of DeRudio's sighting rather odd. We are so quick to suck up stories like "Korn's Wild Ride," Thompson's "Fantasia," Kanipe's "Derby Ride Through the Hinterlands," but we dismiss the testimony from an officer who claimed to be looking at his watch every ten minutes or so [that's called, "nerves"; it is also called, "theory-over-fact"].
And now, at 2:05 PM, you have Custer in MTC? By what, SST? Says who? I would like to see how you back that up. And if so, what about the volley firing an hour later? Or have we forgotten that little gem? Are we back to the old "Custer-waited-45-minutes-in-MTC" theory? That old crock was formulated because no one was ever able to account for the complete timing of events and a lunch-break was the easiest way to wiggle free. Has anyone ever stumbled across the charred remains of juniper bushes used to light the coffee fires?
And remember, Martini said he could not see the LBH river from the top of the hill.
First of all, that's because the river came right up to the edge of the bluffs (unless, of course, we discard that DeRudio testimony, as well) and unless one was standing right at the edge one might not be able to see... but of course, old Giovanni was a Custer confidant, so he would know. I might prefer to believe that Martini couldn't see the river because he wasn't there and because on his ride back he didn't stop and didn't get that close to the edge when he looked over his shoulder to see into the valley.
... an experienced horseman views the land differently than the rest of us. Once Custer knew he was moving to the north, he would have been reading the lay of the land with a perspective far different than you or I.
Are you for real? Gimme a break, Bill!
An experienced horseman would know at a glance the easiest and fastest route for 200 horsemen in column of 4's to traverse.
Using this line of reasoning, we can assume Charlie Reynolds was not an experienced horseman - fontiersman - guide - scout when he got the column lost a couple of times during the first stages of the campaign.
Custer had a well known reputation for picking out the best routes for his command to travel. Gen. Terry had him doing this across the badlands earlier in the expedition.... You are certain he went to 3411 because it provided the best view of the action in the valley. Why wouldn't he follow the same line of thinking when it came to locating Benteen and the Pack train.
Maybe he had other things on his mind. I would submit that he was more concerned about the Indians in front of him than the packs behind him. Again, think "messenger".
... yet remain on the bluffs by 3411 for roughly 25 minutes (according to DeRudio)?
... from the top of SSR Custer would see in an instant the easiest way to reach MTC---and it ain't by way of Cedar. This is why no artifacts or trails were ever found in Cedar.
How about maybe because 2,000 Indians traipsed up and down the coulee from 5:30 PM on the 25th to 4 PM on the 26th? Ya think that might change a shod-horse trail?
Sorry, Bill. Like Ray and me with Benteen, we will never agree on some of these issues. It is my opinion that you are cherry-picking in the wrong orchard and trying to fit too much into too little space-and-time. I also believe your fascination with the local cowboys is misplaced. I have no more confidence in them than I do in a first-year PE student monitoring a class in astro-physics and then telling me all about E = MC2. My preference is reading "benteeneast's" experiences. He lives that stuff!