Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Western Wednesday...!

I love all the history associated with the Old West!

In particular, I find the stories of how the Native Americans were of assistance to the white man in many ways. Besides their vast knowledge of the western lands and their obvious skills as guides and scouts, often the advice they would offer made the difference between life and possible death. Such was the case in the following story from

May 23, 1923:
Curley is buried at Little Big Horn

The Crow scout Curley, the last man on the army side to see Custer and the 7th Cavalry alive, is buried at the National Cemetery of the Big Horn Battlefield in Montana.

Born around 1859 near the Little Rosebud River, Montana, from an early age Curley had participated in fights with the Crow's hated enemy, the Sioux. Like many of his people, Curley viewed the Anglo-American soldiers as allies in the Crow war with the Sioux. When he was in his late teens, he signed on as a cavalry scout to aid the army's major campaign against the Sioux and Cheyenne in the summer of 1876.

Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer and his 7th Cavalry arrived in the Powder River country of southern Montana in early June 1876. As Custer proceeded toward the Little Big Horn Valley, he found increasing signs that a large number of Indians lay ahead. On June 22, Curley and five other Crow scouts were detached from a different unit and sent to Custer to bolster his Arikara scouts.

On the morning of June 25, Curley and the other scouts warned Custer that a massive gathering of Indians lay ahead that far outnumbered his contingent of 187 men. Custer dismissed the report and made the unusual decision to attack in the middle of the day. Both the Crow and Arikara scouts believed this would be suicidal and prepared to die.

Right before the battle began, however, Custer released the Crow scouts from duty. All of the scouts, except for Curley, obeyed and rode off to relative safety. However, since the hills were now swarming with small war parties of Sioux and Cheyenne, Curley initially thought he would be safer if he remained with the soldiers. As the fighting gradually began to heat up, Curley reconsidered. He left Custer and rode to the east. Concealing himself in coulees and ravines, Curley avoided attack and made his way to a ridge about a mile and a half to the east. There he watched much of the battle through field glasses, the last man from the army side to see Custer and his men alive. When it had become clear that Custer's army was going to be wiped out, Curley abandoned his looking post and rode away to warn the approaching Generals Terry and Gibbon of the disaster.

In the weeks following the battle, Curley provided an accurate and valuable account of the final moments of Custer's 7th Cavalry. Unfortunately, some interviewers later pushed the eager-to-cooperate Curley to revise his account and others simply misrepresented his testimony to fit their own theories. Consequently, for many years Curley was dismissed as a liar. Later historians, however, have vindicated the accuracy of Curley's initial story.

Little is known about Curley's life after the Little Big Horn, but at some point he moved to the Crow Agency in Montana where he died of pneumonia on May 21, 1923. Two days later, he was buried at the National Cemetery at the Little Big Horn Battlefield.

Times haven't changed much in the many years since this incident. So often the leaders and PTB refuse the solid advice of experienced folks and instead follow the suggestions of ignorant, uncaring and unskilled desk jockeys.

I guess this is the arrogance born of power. Seems like the more things change, the more they stay the same!

How about fresh coffee on the patio this morning? I have some wonderful donuts I'll share!


Gorges Smythe said...

America's economy is managed by the same sort of folks!

Ben in Texas said...

That battle site memorial is on my list of "must see" when I do my big tour via camper later.

Phyllis (N/W Jersey) said...

Thanks for the history lesson - I always thought everyone was killed in the battle except for one horse.
Donuts?? Donuts?? Save the chocolate one for me!

Momlady said...

If the PTB don't want to hear it they don't listen.

Baby Sis said...

Bubba -

The PTB are just leading us down the merry road to TEOTWAWKI, and so many of us are taking it. That's why I'll have my donut now, please. Always room for a hot Shipley's or a fresh wagon wheel. Yum!

Big hugs -

Dizzy-Dick said...

That wasn't the first time nor the last that the arrogance of leaders leads to their downfall. Hope it works this next election year.

Stephen said...

I have stood on the site and trust me it's a humbling experience. I wish I could share a donut with you...thanks.

HermitJim said...

Hey Gorges...
You sure got that right, my friend!

Thanks for coming by today!

Hey Ben...
That would be a good place to visit, I'm thinking!

Thanks, buddy, for coming by!

Hey Phyllis...
Glad to share a little history with you this morning!

I'll arm wrestle ya for the chocolate one!

Thanks for the visit this morning!

Hey Momlady...
I guess they never have and probably never will!

I appreciate you dropping by this morning!

Hey Sis...
I have a feeling that bad things are coming down the pike for some folks, if you know what I mean!

I even have some donuts holes here that Mom didn't eat! Shame to let them go to waste!

Thanks so much for coming over, Sis!

Hey Dizzy...
All we can do is hope! I think it's time for a fresh start!

Thanks, my friend, for dropping by!

Hey Stephen...
I sure am glad to see you this morning!

I've never been there, but I can only imagine!

Thanks, buddy, for the visit today!

JOJO said...

So much death because his head got to big for his hat.

Its a beautiful morning for coffee on the patio. Later we will have high winds again.

HermitJim said...

Hey JoJo...
That's usually what happens to guys with a little power and a LOT of ego!

Same today as it was back then!

Thanks, sweetie, for coming over today!

Sixbears said...

You know, the "Indian Wars," really wasn't all that long ago. Thing sure have changed quickly.