Custer's last flag: Banner carried at Little Bighorn to be sold





A flag that accompanied Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer and his 7th Cavalry into their final battle 134 years ago will be put up for auction by the auction house Sotheby's on Friday.

Custer led more than 200 other other soldiers into battle against thousands of Lakota and Northern Cheyenne warriors on June 25, 1876, at the Little Bighorn River in what is now Montana. None of the U.S. soldiers survived the battle.

The flag is tattered and fragile, measures 27½ by 33 inches and may be stained with blood. It was found three days after the Battle of Little Bighorn -- or the Battle of Greasy Grass Creek, as the victors called it -- beneath the body of one of Custer's men killed in the battle.

Sgt. Ferdinand Culbertson, a member of the burial detail assigned to retrieve the remains of the 7th Cavalry, found the Cavalry guidon, or swallow-tail flag, that was used by cavalry companies. The design reduced wind drag as the soldiers advanced....


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