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A messenger3 met the general, and Custer took off his buckskin coat and tied it on behind his saddle. Custer rode up and down the column talking to the soldiers. The soldiers cheered and some tied handkerchiefs around their heads and threw hats away. They gave a big cheer and went ahead, but my lazy old horse straggled behind. I saw where we had crossed the river, and I was long was behind the soldiers. There were other stragglers between me and Custer. The ones nearest to me were White Eagle and Bull. Stabbed was behind, came up behind me and explained that he had been out with a message to soldiers over to east (Benteen). Stabbed had a lot of Winchester cartridges in a feed bag, which he gave me to take along. He said there were many Sioux and there would be a big fight, and if he came back he would stay with me and we would make a stand. Stabbed had a Winchester. I had a long infantry gun with two bands.
I, White Eagle, and Bull followed Custer and five companies. We came upon a white soldier 4 whose horse had given out, and he was kicking the horse and striking him with his fist and saying "Me go Custer. Me go Custer." As we went up a little dip we looked over and saw the valley full of Sioux tepees, and I would estimate that there were eight or nine big circles. The first (Hunkpapa) camp was breaking up. If I had had a good horse, I probably would have kept up to Custer and been killed with him. I soon came across a second soldier whose horse was down, overcome by heat, and he could not get him up and was swearing and calling him a son of a bitch and kicking him.
Just after this I saw Ree scouts who had captured horses come up the ridge and Strikes Two said: "Leader, I will give you this spotted horse that is leading the herd." Where they came up the river ran right along the foot of the bluff. Strikes Two said, "Don't take him out. We will drive the whole herd together back to lone tepee." We started back and saw the pack mules coming along by lone tepee. Again my horse could not keep up, and Red Star came up behind me and said, "Uncle, do you see that mouse-colored horse with a white belly? I captured him and you may have him, so take care of him." I took him and brought him back to our reservation, and he lived many years on
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3. This may have been one of the two messengers from Reno. The first messenger was Private Archibald McIlhargey and the second was Private John Mitchell, both of Company I. Both were killed with Custer.
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4. Notice that in Soldier's story he says nothing about the first soldier's horse being down merely that he could not get him along.
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(Walter Camp field notes, folder 54, BYU Library.)

 
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