100 Voices from the Little Bighorn by Bruce Brown Deluxe CD-ROM Bundle Edition

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100 Voices: Sioux, Cheyenne, Arapahoe, Crow, Arikara and American Eye-witness accounts of the Battle of the Little Bighorn

100 Voices: Full List * Crow/Arikara * Sioux/Cheyenne * American * Rosebud

Guided Tours: Crazy Horse at the Little Bighorn * Crazy Horse at the Rosebud

Features: Who Killed Custer? * Who Killed Custer? Audio Book
Features: Crazy Horse Surrender Ledger * Winter Count of Crazy Horse's Life
Features: Bogus Crazy Horse Photos * Unsung 7th Cavalry Scouts Saga
Features: Indian Battlefield Tactics * Woman Warriors
* Little Bighorn Maps
Features: U.S. Medal of Honor Winners * U.S. Atrocities * Indian Atrocities
Little Bighorn Mysteries * Virtual Museum

This is a FREE EXCERPT from
Bruce Brown's 100 Voices...

Ferdinand Widmayer's Story of the Battle
A 7th Cavalry survivor's account of the Battle of the Little Bighorn

Interview with Ferdinand Widmayer, October 7, 1910.1



American Cavalry TrooperSAYS HEARD Trumpeter Fisher2 say that he helped Hodgson across river in Reno's retreat. Sure Sterland3 left at Powder River. Slept with him in wagon there on rainy night. Sure mules - swings and leaders - taken for packs. Wheelers kept at Powder River. Says Bloody Knife went with Reno's scout. He recalls this well because after Reno had gone the boys said did not see how Custer could go anywhere without Bloody Knife.

Says Sgt. Carey4 was not left in timber when Reno retreated. Says there were three. Says might have been Trumpeter Weaver. Geo. Weaver called "Cully" Weaver. Geo. Weaver died at Ft. Meade. Thinks Trumpeter Weaver left in timber.5

Sure David Ackison, Co. E, left at Powder.6 Sure Jerry Woodruff, Co. E, left at Powder. Says Hiram E. Brown of F went with packs. Widmayer had to turn over 2 mules to him which he took with the command for packs. Says Rooney with troop at Little Bighorns saw Nathan Short. Heard that a dead soldier was found and went to see him. Bones of man and horse and carbine were found. Sling belt still on the skeleton. Says was near the Rosebud. Body lay out in open space near some brush but not in brush. No log near the remains. A good many went to see it. Sure this was before met Crook. Sure the bones of a horse also there. Says body had been dead a long time and clothing rotted. If this is correct could not have been Short, but he says the talk at the time was that it was supposed to have been one of Custer's men who got away. Says the remains of the man were buried there.

Walter Mason Camp's Notes:

1. Walter Camp field notes, folder 43, BYU Library. Ferdinand Widmayer, born in Germany, enlisted on September 26, 1873. At the time of the Little Bighorn River fight he was on detached service from Company M at Yellowstone Depot on the Powder River. He retired as color sergeant and resided in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

2. Charles Fischer was a trumpeter in Company M.

3. Walter Scott Sterland was a private in Company M and was on detached service at Yellowstone Depot on the Powder River. He died on August 27, 1922, at Dickinson, North Dakota.

4. Sergeant Patrick Carey of Company M was wounded in the right hip in the hilltop fight on June 26 and was taken to Fort A. Lincoln on the steamer Far West.

5. Henry C. Weaver was a trumpeter in Company M.

6. David Ackison was a private in Company E and was absent because of illness at Yellowstone Depot; and Jerry Woodruff, also a private in Company E, was on detached service at Fort A. Lincoln. Hiram E. Brown, a private in Com pany F, was on detached duty in the Quartermaster Department, and James M. Rooney, a private in Company F, was with the pack train on June 25.

Custer in '76: Walter Camp's Notes on the Custer Fight, edited by Kenneth Hammer, Brigham Young University Press 1976 p 145 - 146


Although Ferdinand Widmayer was on detached duty at Yellowstone Depot on the Powder River at the time of the battle, his story of the Seventh Cavalry trooper's body found near the Rosebud afterwards is a valuable eye-witness account.

-- B.B.

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