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Visitor center without visitors

Travel in the summer of the pandemic meant a road trip instead of flying to our destination, a lot of picnics, learning new rules every time we got to a new state, and visitor centers that weren’t accepting visitors.

Little Bighorn National Battleground, Montana
photographed 8.28.2020

Row on Row

This site has been a national cemetery since 1879; the original designation, three years after the battle of Little Bighorn, was intended to protect graves of the 7th Cavalry troopers buried there. In 1886, The site was proclaimed National Cemetery of Custer’s Battlefield Reservation to include burials of other campaigns and wars. The name has been since been shortened to “Custer National Cemetery.” (from Wikipedia.)

Custer National Cemetery
Little Bighorn National Battleground, Montana
photographed 8.28.2020

No way to be knowin’

Here’s a detail from yesterday’s photo of the Memory Tree. There was something about those buttons…

The title of this post comes from the Cowboy Celtic song I linked to a couple of days ago:

Just who fell first and who was last
There’s no way to be knowin’

And in the background you can see the markers where Custer and some of his troops fell.

Little Bighorn National Battleground, Montana
photographed 8.28.2020

The Memory Tree

This little tree has a big responsibility, with all those mementos attached to it. It’s just that I don’t know why those things are there or what the significance is. But it’s important to everyone who left something behind and I wanted to honor that emotion with this image. And if anyone knows about this memory tree, please tell me.

Little Bighorn National Battleground, Montana
photographed 8.28.2020

Custer died a runnin’

Back in the olden days, the Patient Spouse visited this location, which back then was known as the Custer Battlefield. Since then, the name’s been changed to something less Euro-centric, the Little Bighorn National Battleground. But, either way, it’s where in 1876 General George Custer and his troops battled Lakota and Cheyenne warriors, and came out on the losing end. Over 263 U.S. troops were killed, including Custer. The Lakota and Cheyenne were camped along the river – the trees at the bottom of this hill. The markers in this photo show where U.S. troops fell; the marker in the center, the one with the dark area, shows where Custer’s body was found.

The band Cowboy Celtic has a song called “Custer Died A Runnin'” and of course the song was on my mind. It was on my mind to the point that we played it several times while we drove through the park.

Little Bighorn National Battleground, Montana
photographed 8.28.2020

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