"Remembering the Fallen" Top 5 Page for this destination Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument by Bwana_Brown

Sue and I decided that it was now or never for a driving trip to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks in Wyoming. Since we would have to drive across a good portion of Montana to reach the parks, we also decided to spend an extra day or two to check out the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument where General Custer and many of his troops fought their last battle in 1876. The following, taken from Wikipedia, briefly describes how various events in American history led to this famous battle by the Little Bighorn River.

The Great Sioux War that led to Custer’s final battle was just another step in a long series of Indian wars that had gradually swept across the United States as the first settlers along the Atlantic seaboard grew in numbers and continued exploring westward over the following centuries. The Sioux and Cheyenne tribes had also been pushing westward and claimed this area from other tribes in the late 1700s, thanks to their new-found expertise with horses, originally introduced to North America by early Spanish explorers. Because the Black Hills in South Dakota was an important source of timber for their lodges and was home to abundant wild game, it became a sacred land to the Lakota Sioux. However, up into the 1860s, settlers encroaching on their territory resulted in various skirmishes and battles as both the Sioux and Cheyenne tribes tried to defend their new homelands from intruders.

Finally, in 1868 a treaty was signed between the US Government and the two tribes, setting aside a large part of their land (including the Black Hills) for their exclusive use, including hunting. However, by 1872 territorial officials were determined to cut lumber on the ceded tribal lands as settler housing needs grew. The 1874 discovery of gold in the Black Hills and the need to run railway lines across their territory were the final straws, as more and more illegal prospectors and settlers moved in. The US Government then decided not to enforce the treaty it had signed only a few years earlier. Sioux leaders met with President Grant and his advisors in Washington DC in 1875 to try for one final peaceful settlement, but the government was firm in its decision. By 1876 the US Army was dispatched to help the settlers gain the access they desired and open warfare with the Sioux, Cheyenne and Arapaho tribes was soon set in motion. Custer’s 7th Cavalry column was part of three Army units converging from different directions in June, 1876 to deal with the Sioux and Cheyenne once and for all.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:A very well organized and nice setting in the American west
  • Cons:None that we could see
  • In a nutshell:This Battlefield Monument is well worth a visit.
  • Last visit to Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument: Jul 2010
  • Intro Updated Aug 15, 2010
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Reviews (11)

Comments (14)

  • HORSCHECK's Profile Photo
    Apr 9, 2011 at 2:39 AM

    Glenn, fabulous little page with interesting commentaries and gorgeous photos. Can you believe that I haven't been to the US up to now? Greetings from sunny Germany.

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    Dec 31, 2010 at 11:11 AM

    One day I may get out that far to see this history and the monument of the battle. As always, you did a great job of discussing the sites, and the pictures are supportive.

  • PinkFloydActuary's Profile Photo
    Nov 15, 2010 at 4:34 AM

    Three trips I've had out west, and this place was beyond the periphery of all, so I couldn't stretch them...looks like I'll need to try again!

  • Greggor58's Profile Photo
    Oct 20, 2010 at 6:01 PM

    Great page about a place that holds some significant American history...Id enjoy a visit here I know! Thanks for including the close up photo of the memorial panel..interesting to me as one of the Lieutenants family name is the same as mine :o)

  • starship's Profile Photo
    Sep 2, 2010 at 8:04 PM

    Good page! Your historical accounts were excellent! BTW, artichokes cooked in that fashion are meant to be eaten by pulling off the individual leaves & eating a small portion near the base of the leaf base only--Italian style--only about 1/4 of each leaf.

  • Trekki's Profile Photo
    Aug 31, 2010 at 10:56 PM

    Interesting description about this famous battlefield. I like the Native Americans' memorial very much, it looks touching! Oh my, looking at this artichoke, I couldn't have eaten it either!

  • Aug 28, 2010 at 7:27 AM

    It looks like you picked the right time of year to visit this national monument. Your pictures are so bright and shinny! I’ve never given Montana one single thought in my whole life—and I don’t know why. It seems like a pleasant place to visit.

  • kyoub's Profile Photo
    Aug 22, 2010 at 4:32 AM

    Interesting little stop. Very nice Spirit Warrior sculpture and photos.

  • richiecdisc's Profile Photo
    Aug 22, 2010 at 1:55 AM

    That's what I like to hear: saving your carbs for the extra beer. ;) Looks like you made a great move leaving home early and finding a gem like this along the way.

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Aug 19, 2010 at 3:16 PM

    After several name changes they seem to have settled on a name that satisfies everyone and honors those who died on both sides of the battle. The Spirit Warriors Sculpture looks fascinating and sounds like an appropriate addition to the National Monument.

Bwana_Brown

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