ambush Sept 3, 2015 13:07:45 GMT -5
Post by rancher on Sept 3, 2015 13:07:45 GMT -5
Reno testified about ambush and much later two second generation Indians, children of the veterans, one Sioux, one Cheyene: both literate with supperb english skills said Custer (= Custer's army) was ambushed. I am wondering if any one can add any further ambush accounts. A Yankton Sioux Henry Lyman, who attended Yale but saddly died 5 years later left a long account first published as "Talks and Thoughts of the Indian Students, Hampton Institute, VA, December 1888. The account was republished in O'Taylor. It's too long to give the total but here is the idea: A ravine lined with poplar and ash (cottonwood is in the poplar family) was between the mouth of Reno Creek and the Village and was filled with young warriors awaiting the enemy. Reno testified about a ravine 250 yards infront of his skirmish line of which Indians were pouring out of to his left. After the battle Reno himself went over the ground and found and then testified that a 10 yard wide and 4 yard deep"ditch" was 250 yards in front of his skirmish line. He testified that a horse could not jump or cross it ( just a thought here that maybe why the mounted warriors were pouring out the left side as the cut bank of the ditch necessitated going out the end ). So an entrenched position 250 yards in front of Reno. Reno testified that he thought something was up as it was not normal that the Indians would leave their Village unapossed to attack and is why he dismounted and went into a skirmish line. The third mention comes in Chief Redfox's autobiography were he simpley stated his father and uncle ( Crazy Horse ) told him they ambushed Custer. Redfox was 7 or 8 years old and in the village at the time. He lived a very long time and he wrote his own biography which was edited by his son's writing instructor and published. 4th reference to the potential for ambush comes from Sheridan who testified that there was high spot just downstream of the ford of which 20 men could control the ford from any attack. I believe the gravel bank and bed of the river covered from view by the most down stream point of the ridge line ( unfortunately called bluffs cause it's a ridge ) could easilly conceal a very large force (hundreds) from Custer's view as he approached ( ie the ambush ). In a river ambush it's preferable to let the front of an enemy column cross and start shooting when the end of the enemy column enters the water. Not saying this happened only that would be the ideal enemy plan. It could be the Indian commander chose to use the crossing of Medicine Tail Coulee in that matter. The idea any way is you cut the enemy column off from retreat before you start shooting. The crow scouts in Graham's "Custer Myth" mention Custer's and Custer's troops dismounting and engauging in a long distance firefight on that flatt rise between Medicine Tail Coulee and Deep Coulee ( which is not to be confused with deep ravine ). One has to recognize the difference between a firefight and aimed fire. One has to realize that in the civil war it took 600 rounds of bullets and a couple of hundred pounds of iron to kill one Yankee and that's with massed targets at shorter ranges. The required ammunition to kill one enemy has continued to rise till it's now 100,000 of rounds. As the firing rates and distances have increased aimed fire has gone to kill zones of diagonal cross fire. So it's unlikely anyone or animal was killed if you have a total of 100 rounds at some point you are going to have to stop this long distance firefight. I'd like to bring up that it was mentioned as hearsay testamony that a scout (assume Crow) said that Keogh was wounded. Crow scouts depart from Custer at this point: the long distance firefight. In comparison Reno with 100 soldier combatants used up approximately 1/3 of his amo in 10-15 mintes of a long distance firefight. The enemy commander will want to cut you off from getting more of anything. Now you got a reall problem. These warriors, buffallo hunters ( recently buffallo were killing more people than the grizzlies for a while, my cousin got a horse killed out from under him by a buff and I saw a cow hook a 200 pound calf and throw it 10 feet in the air with it dying a few minutes after so I'm trying to tell you if you want to be a buffallo hunter you'd better be tough), anyway these warriors on fresh ponies can close that 500 yard firefight distance in about 60 seconds. So you got yourself a big problem. Anyway does anyone have any ambush accounts than the first three I mentioned.