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Old 27 June 2015, 21:26
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The Fights On The Little Horn. Unveiling the mysteries of Custer's Last Stand

The BEST book on Custer I have read to date is "The Fights On The Little Horn. Unveiling the mysteries of Custer's Last Stand" by Gordon Harper. This book is based on primary sources (interviews, letters, and such developed over 40 years of study). These interviews, trial transcripts, and notes also include the NA point of view of the battle. This is a very in-depth look at the battle, background of the campaign, and individuals that are a part of it. The movements of individuals and units. There are also some analytical chapters on some questions such as Custer disobeying orders, and splitting the command prior to the battle. Harper looks both at critics and supporters of Custer from a neutral stance. He brings forth some very sound arguments against what in many cases is considered be common knowledge.

Read that with "Archeology, History, and Custer's Last Battle" by Richard Fox. This book is based on the forensic exam of the battlefield after a fire removed the normal 2-3 foot tall grass that grows there. Think a platoon on line with metal detectors. Through the discovery of previously unknown remains (Mitch Boyer's), tracking of weapons through shell cases and spent bullets as the rifle and pistol changes hands Fox and the team of researchers, scientists, and volunteers have laid the ground work of discovering of what happened on that hot June afternoon so many years ago.

If you only read two books on Custer and the Little Big Horn.... read Fox then Harper.
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Old 28 June 2015, 12:43
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I also read this and agree it is a fantastic book. My son gave it to me after I mentioned the O'Reilly series about the West and segment on Custer. Also recently watched a show on History or Disc or something where they located thousands of bullets and casings and did geographic forensics on them and came to some different conclusions than history has reported.

In the end, Custer proved that ego and pride will ruin a good military op at every opportunity.
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Old 28 June 2015, 17:48
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Custer

I wrote my Master's thesis on LBH, used Fox's book extensively as a source. I thought the theory that Custer had predisposed notions based on experience that the Indians likely reaction would be (retreat/protect the women and kids with defense) was compelling. This caused him to stretch his forces with the primary intent of envelopment and they were caught off guard by the offensive actions. Just a theory.
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Old 29 June 2015, 08:46
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Cspillk9 - The show you watched is about the forensic exam that is covered in much more detail in the Fox book.
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Old 29 June 2015, 21:17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RetPara View Post
Cspillk9 - The show you watched is about the forensic exam that is covered in much more detail in the Fox book.
Roger that, thanks!
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Old 29 June 2015, 23:55
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Thanks for this, OP. After recently reading quite a bit about the War Between the States, this is a great followup to Custer's body of work during that time.
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Old 30 June 2015, 20:44
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Fred... are you the same Fred from the Little Bighorn History Alliance?
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Old 2 July 2015, 21:58
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neg, wish I had the time...
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Old 27 September 2015, 16:36
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Perfect. Was just looking to pick up a few new books. Thanks.

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