The Battle of Greasy Grass Creek, as it called by the Native Americans
involved although it is probably better know to you as The Battle of the Little Bighorn or Custer’s
Last Stand, was an armed
engagement between combined forces of Northern Cheyenne
and their alleys the
Lakota Soiux against the 7th Cavalry. It occurred on June 25
1876 near the Little Bighorn river in eastern Montana Territory, near what is now Crow Agency, Montana.
The battle was the most
famous action of The Great Sioux War (1876 – 1877), also known as The Black Hills War. It was an overwhelming
victory for the Northern Cheyenne, led by Sitting Bull (Tȟatȟáŋka
Íyotake) & the Lakota Sioux. The U.S. Seventh Cavalry, including a
force of 700 men led by George Armstong Custer, suffered a
severe defeat. Five of the Seventh’s companies were annihilated; Custer
was killed, as were two of his brothers, a nephew, and a brother-in-law. The total cavalry deaths were 268, including scouts, and 55 were wounded.
Custer had been told that there were around 800 hostiles in the area wereas there were thousands. That morning when he tried to launch his attack on the native’s camp he thought that the reason he could only see women & children was because all the braves were still asleep in their beds.
It is not clear exactly how Custer died as none of his men survived to give their account of the battle & Native accounts are unclear. It is generaly believed that Buffalo Calf Road Woman struck the blow to his chest that brought him down off his horse & a gun shot wound to his head seems to confirm the Natives accounts of him commiting suicide rather than be captured, as so many of his men did that day.
were deeply shocked by Custer’s defeat and by the death toll, even though it had been greater in other battles, the whole thing really fired the public’s imagination. It was the beginning of the end of The Indian Wars, the US army aggresively forced Natives back to the reservations where they were blackmailed into giving up the sacred Black Hills to the USA.