This Week in Little Bighorn History

Joseph Bates, who was also known as John or Joseph Murphy, was born in Providence, Rhode Island, on June 10, 1838. He was a Private with Company M who participated in the valley and hilltop fights at the Battle of the Little Bighorn.

Elmer Babcock was born on June 10, 1856, in Pharsalia, Chenango County, New York. He was a Private in Company L who was killed with Custer’s Column.

Samuel Davis Sturgis (left) was born in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania, on June 11, 1822. Colonel Sturgis was an 1846 graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point who was Commanding the 7th Regiment of Cavalry at the time of the battle but was on detached service in St. Louis, Missouri, at the time. Unfortunately, his son, Second Lieutenant James Garland Sturgis was with Company E during the battle and was killed.

Edward D. Pigford was born on June 11, 1856, in West Elizabeth, Pennsylvania. He was a Private in Company M who was wounded during the valley and hilltop fights.

William Heyn (right) died in Washington, D.C., on June 11, 1910, and was buried in the Soldiers’ Home National Cemetery there. He was a First Sergeant in Company A who was wounded in his left knee during the valley and hilltop fights.

Peter Eixenberger was born on June 12, 1860, in Munich, Germany. He was a Private with the Band; therefore, he was not present at the battle.

Peter Gannon died at Fort Assinniboine, Montana Territory, on June 12, 1886. He was first buried in a cemetery there and later reinterred in the Custer National Cemetery on the Crow Agency, Montana. He was a Sergeant in Company B who was not present at the battle due to detached service.

Michael Murphy died on June 12, 1904, at the Soldiers’ Home in Washington, D.C., and was buried in the National Cemetery there. He was a Private in Company K who participated in the hilltop fight.

John H. Day died in Monroe, Ouachita Parish, Louisiana, on June 13, 1894, and was buried in the Old City Cemetery there. He was a Private in Company H who participated in the hilltop fight.

George Anderson was born on June 14, 1841, in St. Catherines, Canada. He was a Private in Company K who was not present at the battle due to detached service.

John Samuel Ragsdale married Verna Bell Owen on June 14, 1926, but they divorced after 1940. He was a Private in Company A who was not present at the battle due to detached service.

Christopher Pendle  (left) was born on June 15, 1849, in Bavaria, Germany, and died on June 4, 1923, in Gardenville, Washington. His remains were cremated, and it is not known where they were dispersed. He was a Private in Company E who was not present at the battle due to detached service.

James O’Neill was born in Liverpool, England, on June 15, 1851. He was a Private in Company B who was not present at the battle due to detached service.

Charles Windolph, who was also known as Charles Wrangel, married Mary Jones on June 15, 1882. He was a Private in Company H who was wounded in the hilltop fight. He was awarded both the Medal of Honor and the Purple Heart for his service during the battle.

 

 


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