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SHSND Home > Archives > Archives Holdings > Archives & Manuscripts > Military > Frontier Military / Indian Wars
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Manuscripts by Subject - Military - Frontier Military / Indian Wars


10013 John Victor Bean
Papers, 1868-1954.
Biography, orders, and correspondence concerning Missouri River navigation; wagon trains; army life and the construction of buildings at Fort Stevenson; warfare between the Sioux, Mandan, Arikara, and Gros Ventres (Hidatsa); hunting; and Indian policy. Bean was a physician at Fort Stevenson, DT, 1868-1870. (.25ft)

10020 Philippe Regis Denis de Keredern Trobriand
Papers, 1866-1869, 1926
Correspondence concerning life and personal affairs at Fort Stevenson, DT while Trobriand was commanding officer, nine letters (1866-1867) from France, a typewritten manuscript of the translation of Trobriand's journal Vie Militaire Dans le Dakota (1926), by George F. Will, a Sioux-French vocabulary, and a roster of the 31st US Infantry. (.25ft)

10047 United States Department of War
Records, 1868-1895
Copies of letters and reports concerning the establishment and abandonment of Forts Bridger, Buford, Pembina, Ransom, and Stevenson, and reports concerning ferry service and land settlement at Fort Buford. (.5ft)

10079 Charles S. Farnsworth
Papers, 1891-1894
Consists of a letterpress book containing copies of Farnsworth’s outgoing correspondence from December 29, 1891 to August 14, 1894. He was transferred to Fort Shaw (Mont.) to Fort Buford (N.D.) on August 31, 1891 where he was in charge of the quartermaster stores and commissary and was post treasurer. In September 1893 he was transferred to the University of North Dakota where he became the school’s first professor of military science and tactics. The letters are both personal and professional in nature, covering his time at Fort Buford and UND.. (.25ft)

10115 Matthew Forney Steele
Papers, 1871-1898
Letters from Steele to his mother concerning family affairs and military service in New York, Virginia, Georgia, Texas, Dakota Territory, and North Dakota. Includes reminiscences of the death of Sitting Bull. (2ft)

10116 Nelson A. Mason
Papers, 1939-1946
Manuscripts, correspondence, printed material, affidavits, and newspaper clippings relating to the Battle of the Little Big Horn. (.25ft)

10184 Theodore Northrop
Papers, 1901-1912
Correspondence, contracts, legislative bills, legal documents, programs, and newspaper clippings concerning the establishment of a memorial at the Whitestone Hill Battlefield Commission. (.25ft)

10330 Fort Stevenson
Records, 1879-1881
Two account journals/daybook showing purchases of supplies and payment for services. (2v)

10363 George A. and Elizabeth B. Custer
Consist of correspondence, orders, notes, broadsides, newspaper clippings, rosters, certificates, memorabilia, literary manuscripts, and printed material. Purchased from the Custer Battlefield Historical and Museum Association Sept. 9, 1971. (8r. #4368-4375).

10391 Alfred Terry
Papers, 1876
Field notebook of General Terry, Department of Dakota, concerning troop movements, weather conditions, Indian intelligence reports, and steamboat traffic relating to the 1876 Sioux Expedition and the Battle of the Little Big Horn. (1r/#4300)

10499 C. Ross Bloomquist
Papers, 1960-1970
Carrington, ND; Foster Co., ND
Research notes, histories, maps, and card files relating to Carrington, ND and Foster Co., ND. (3ft)

10585 Fort Buford
Records, 1866-1997
Copy of a journal and daybook, disability discharge papers, general order, quartermaster store inventory, hospital inventory, annual return, list of ordnance, commissary property inventory, photocopy of interment record, hospital fund report, and voucher. (.25ft)

10607 George W. Hill
Papers, 1875
Photocopies of military correspondence and orders of Captain George W. Hill, his descriptions of the Sundance of the Sioux and the military reservation at Fort Totten, photographic negatives and an index to the photographs, and publications. (.25ft)

10621 Fort Totten Military Reservation
Records, 1868-1869
Maps of sites surveyed and platted by Captain George William Hill and a ground plan by Hill of the Bride agency military station. (2 items)

10762 William Badger
Papers, 1865-1889
Military records including forms, requisitions, receipt rolls, clothing return forms, and correspondence that relate to political rivalries in New Hampshire, Badger’s position as quartermaster of the Army’s 6th Infantry stationed at Standing Rock and Fort Rice, DT, and three letters from his son William C. Badger who was involved in a meat packing and selling business. (.5ft)

10865 Samuel L. Meddaugh
Papers, 1876
Transcript copy of diary dating from May 14, 1876 to September 15, 1876 documenting the day to day activities of Colonel Meddaugh who served in the 6th U.S. Infantry covering the Indian campaign along the Yellowstone River. Microfilm is a copy of the original owned by Newberry Library, Chicago IL. (1r/#14879)

10875 Leighton and Jordan Fort Buford Journal
Records, 1875
Journal containing daily sale entries dating from January 18, 1875 to October 15, 1875 listing the names of traders, items purchased, prices, shipping fees, and the names of the steamboats. Some of the officers of the fort are listed such as Dr. Lord, post surgeon who was killed with George Armstrong Custer and Mark Kellogg at the Battle of the Little Big Horn. (1v/1r #15039)

10896 Wilmot P. Sanford
Papers, 1874-1875, 1876-1877
Research copy of the original held by Yale University, New Haven, CT, documenting the day to day life of Private Sanford, who served at Fort Buford, DT. (1r/#15234)

11108 Mark Harvey Fort Buford
Research Files, ca. 2000
Harvey’s research files on the history of Fort Buford and the Yellowstone-Missouri River confluence, mostly copies of archival sources from the National Archives, Missouri Historical Society (on Fort Union), and Montana Historical Society. Much of it is letters written to or from Fort Buford by various U.S. Army officials in the 1860s-1880s.  Also included are eight bound copies of Army records originally copied from the National Archives by Ben Innis of Williston, ND. (2.75 ft)

20005 Andrew Nahum Canfield
Papers, 1868
Diary describing reconnaissance activities of an Army officer in the 13th Infantry while stationed at Camp Cooke, MT. (1 item/1r/#1071)

20006 Sarah Elizabeth Canfield
Papers, 1866-1867
Copy of Sarah Canfield's diary containing entries concerning life at Fort Berthold and Camp Cooke, and a trip on the Missouri River. Wife of army officer Andrew N. Canfield. (1 item/1r #10153)

20014 David Heilger
Papers, ca. 1920
Reminiscences of Fort Union in 1867. (1 item)

20016 Atkinson - O'Fallon Expedition
Records, ca. 1825
Copies of the expedition journal documenting efforts to negotiate treaties with Indians and letters from General Henry Atkinson to General T. S. Jesup concerning methods of navigation on the Missouri River. Includes notes by Russell Reid and Clell Gannon. (4 items)

20017 Mark H. Kellogg
Papers, 1876
Diary of Bismarck Tribune reporter who was killed at the Battle of the Little Big Horn. Includes the original and three transcripts concerning the 7th Cavalry and the Little Big Horn Expedition. (4 items/oversize.)

20018 Mrs. Fred Klawitter
Papers, 1935
Transcript of an interview with Mrs. Klawitter, wife of a soldier stationed at Fort Abraham Lincoln, concerning life at the Fort in 1876 and the Battle of the Little Big Horn. (1 item)

20031 J. N. G. Whistler
Papers, 1866
Transcript of a report from Whistler to Lieutenant R. A. Torry, Acting Assistant Adjutant General, District of the Upper Missouri, Fort Rice, Dakota Territory, describing an Indian attack on a herd of U.S. Army cattle and horses near Fort Rice. Whistler was a Major, 13th Infantry, U.S. Army. (1 item)

20034 Peter Thompson
Papers, 1914
Reminiscences entitled, "The Experience of a Private Soldier in the Custer Massacre," "Story of the Ree Scout," and a transcript of a letter from J. S. Smith to W. M. Camp concerning the Battle of the Little Big Horn. (3 items/1r/#16073)

20044 William Passmore Carlin
Papers, 1876
Letters and orders from Carlin to Captain R. E. Johnston, Indian agent at the Standing Rock Indian Agency, concerning Indian policy in the aftermath of the Battle of the Little Big Horn, the surrender of "hostiles," Indian rations and confiscation of ponies and arms, and the appointment of Goose as the chief of the Blackfeet Band. Carlin was a Lt. Colonel, 17th Infantry, Standing Rock, DT. (10 items)

20046 Mrs. G. W. Wales
Papers, 1866-1867
Reminiscences of life on military posts in Dakota Territory including Fort Randall, Fort Buford, Fort Stevenson, and Fort Sully.(1 item)

20067 William P. Zahn
Papers, 1871-1907
Soldier’s diary and newspaper clippings concerning the Black Hills Expedition of 1874, and transcripts of a diary containing entries concerning events at Fort Rice, the Standing Rock and Grand River Agencies, military activity against Indians, escorting surveying parties, the Morain murder, and the murder of Sitting Bull. (2 items)

20082 James C. Ferguson
Papers, 1954
Transcript of personal reminiscences of childhood experiences at Fort Yates, Sisseton Indian Agency, For Hale, Fort Randall, and Fort Bennett, ca. 1880-1890. Relates to Indians, soldiers, weather conditions, recreation, and family activities. (1 item) Copy of originals at Minnesota Historical Society.

20112 William A. Falconer
Papers, 1920-1930
Letters from Edward Settle Godfrey, J. M. Carnahan, Lawrence F. Abbott, and William H. Ghent concerning George Armstrong Custer and the Battle of the Little Big Horn, review of the Custer Trail (1867), newspaper clippings concerning Custer and the battle, notes on Bismarck history, a copy of the General E. S. Godfrey diary, a biography of early Bismarck settler Robert Wilson, an essay concerning Sarah Campbell, a cook with Custer’s expedition to the Black Hills in 1874, a history of Fort Wadsworth (later Fort Sisseton), and a history of Burleigh Co. (12 items)

20119 Guy Atherton
Papers, ca. 1950s
Reminiscences concerning Atherton's experiences in the U.S. Army at Fort Buford during the 1890s, and leaflets concerning the Conservation Militant organization. (4 items)

20125 James S. McNaught and John McIntosh
Papers, 1867-1885
Letter and special orders relating to escorting prisoners and recruits, arresting Chippewa Indians along the Red River, court martial duty, travel expenses, appointments, and transfers. Both men were Captains in the 20th U.S. Infantry Regiment serving at various times at Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ransom, Randall, and Totten. (9 items)

20127 New York Life Insurance Company
Records, 1876
Copies of life insurance claims resulting from the Battle of the Little Big Horn. (6 items)

20139 Ernest W. Brenned
Papers, 1876.
Transcript of letter from Brenned to Mrs. Banks of Fort Totten, DT, concerning the Battle of the Little Big Horn. (1 item)

20147 Frederick Francis Girard
Papers, 1876-1883
Transcripts of letters from Girard to his daughters regarding family matters and the expedition against the Sioux in 1876. (4 items)

20166 Lloyd Wheaton
Papers, 1870
Copy of a report submitted to the Assistant Adjutant General, Department of Dakota concerning troop movements from Fort Abercrombie to Fort Pembina. Wheaton was Captain of Company I, 20th Infantry, U.S. Army. (1 item)

20172 Joseph A. Humphrey
Papers, 1860
Letter from Humphrey, a buffalo hunter, to Major Hannibal Day at Fort Abercrombie informing him that Indians had stolen three of his horses. (1 item)

20180 R. G. Redd
Papers, 1877
Document written by the Post Surgeon, Fort Abraham Lincoln, certifying the identity of officers killed at the Battle of the Little Big Horn, including Colonel Thomas Custer, Captain George Yates, Lieutenant James Calhoun, Lieutenant A.E. Smith, and Lieutenant Donald McIntosh. (1 item)

20189 George Hampton Crossman
Papers, 1895
Transcripts of letters from Crossman to T. J. Walker describing construction of Fort Ransom, social and family life, weather conditions, and a prairie fire, ca. 1867-1868. (3 items)

20191 Henry Ware Lawton
Papers, December 21, 1876
Letter from Lawton, a Lieutenant in the 4th U.S. Cavalry, concerning Indian fighting in Wyoming Territory near the Belle Fourche River. (1 item)

20237 Bad Temper
Papers, July 3, 1885
Letter written by the captain of the 11th Infantry, Fort Abraham Lincoln identifying Bad Temper as an Indian Scout and asking whites to assist Bad Temper in his search for lost ponies in the vicinity of Fort Yates. Letter was transferred to Red Fish at Bad Temper's death in 1889. (1item)

20243 D. DeMarsh
Papers, 1878
Letter from DeMarsh to Secretary of War requesting permission to operate a dairy at Fort Buford, DT. Letter is endorsed by officers serving at the fort. (1 item)

20258 Thomas P. Eagan
Papers, 1876
Copy of a letter from a corporal, Company E, 7th Cavalry, to his sister concerning the 1876 campaign against the Sioux prior to his death in the Battle of the Little Big Horn. (1 item)

20278 Fort Totten Interment Record
Records, 1868-1889
Dates, names of deceased, and cause of death. (1 item)

20287 George J. Newgard
Papers, n.d.
Manuscript by a Lt. Colonel in the U.S. Army entitled, “Random Recollections of an Army Surgeon,” describing experiences at various military posts including Fort Yates, DT. (1 item)

20319 General Marion Maus
Papers, 1877-1939
Copies of military records of General Marion Maus and Colonel Louis Maus, reminiscences of Mrs. Louis Maus regarding their experiences at the Standing Rock Agency in the 1870s, and photographs. (19 items)

20373 Michael Vetter
Papers, 1874-1876
Photocopies of letters from Vetter to his brother concerning his experiences in the U.S. Army while stationed at Fort Totten. Vetter was killed at the Battle of the Little Big Horn. (9 items)

20379 Elizabeth B. Custer
Papers, 1921, 1930
Letter from Custer to W. M. Wemett, Valley City, ND expressing tanks for encouragement to write Boots and Saddles, and comments on her memories of Dakota Territory. Second letter from Custer to State Historical Society relating to publication of accounts of the Battle of the Little Big Horn. (3 items)

20382 Aaron McGaffey Beede
Papers, 1915
Letters written to Paul L. Kluender, a Lutheran minister, concerning the Battle of the Little Big Horn. (5 items)

20415 Caroline Larrabee
Papers, 1876-1884
Letters from Larrabee, wife of William H. Larrabee who faced court martial charges for desertion from 7th Cavalry Company L, describing homesteading, Fort Totten Sioux, and the settlement of Carrington, North Dakota. (9 items) See also MS-20499

20425 Anne Ransco
Papers, n.d.
Typescript of a brief history entitled "Story of Two Early Forts - Pembina, Ransom," describing the establishment, physical configuration, and major events associated with the forts. (1 item)

20499 William H. Larrabee
Papers, 1876
Transcripts of documents concerning the court martial of William Larrabee, Private, 7th Cavalry Company L, for desertion from Fort Totten in 1875. (1 item) See MS-20445.

20522 Catherine Marcotte
Papers, 1889-1974
Copies of notes, letters, legal documents, souvenir program, transcript of Jean Louis Legare v. the United States w/Marcotte's notes, biographical sketch, notes, correspondence to the State Historical Societ,y and a newspaper story concerning Jean Louis Legare’s claims against the U.S. government to be reimbursed for supplies furnished to Sitting Bull’s followers in Canada. (.05ft.)

20603 Allen Siegert
Papers, 1890
Fort Yates, ND
Photocopy and transcript of a letter from Siegert, a soldier in Company G, 12th Infantry, concerning the killing of Sitting Bull. (2 items)

20622 Fort Pembina
Records, 1870, 1895
Copies of letters and general orders from the headquarters of the Department of Dakota and the Secretary of War relating to the location, boundaries, and disposition of Fort Pembina. (5 items)

20644 Fort Abraham Lincoln
Records, 1873
Contract between the fort quartermaster and Orris F. Odell and Daniel Stafford to supply the fort with wood. (1 item)

20661 Brackett’s Battalion and Fifth Iowa Cavalry
Records, 1915
Minutes of meetings concerning establishment of a monument on the site of the Battle of Killdeer Mountain (2 items)

20671 Pierre Bottineau
Papers, 1879
Petition from Minnesota citizens to Congress requesting a federal pension for Bottineau in recognition of his years of service as a scout. (1 item)

20706 William Johnson
Papers, n.d.
Reminiscences of the Sioux Expedition of 1876 and the battle of the Little Big Horn. (1 item)

20710 Patrick Hill
Papers, 1873-1928, 1987
Photocopies of a biographical sketch (1987), letters, and other documents relating to personal affairs of Hill, an Indian scout and express carrier, at Forts Abraham Lincoln, Stevenson, Seward, and Buford, and pension papers. (27 items)

20767 John Lyons
Papers, 1872
Letter of commendation to Private Lyons while stationed at Fort Rice, DT. (1 item)

20834 Fort Seward
Records, 1873
Maps, survey notes, and correspondence relating to a survey of the proposed military reservation at Fort Seward. (4 items)

20887 H. G. Thomas
Papers, 1869, 1879
Letters from Colonel William Hawley, while stationed at Fort Ransom, DT, to an unnamed general stationed at Fort Abercrombie, DT, and letters written from Ella (nee Sturgis) to her husband Charley (no surname given) while he was stationed at Fort Buford, DT. Ella Sturgis was the daughter of General Sturgis and sister of Lieutenant Sturgis of the 3rd Wisconsin Regiment, 20th Infantry. (.05ft)

21007 J. Frank Bell
Papers, 1883
Handwritten report dated November 22, 1883 from Lieutenant J. Frank Bell to the Fort Buford, DT Post Adjutant detailing his expedition to find missing cattle of nearby ranchers, those who accompanied him, and other details of the journey. A postscript to his father explains why the report was written. (.05ft)

21205 James H. Russell
Copy of a transcript of the diary of Sergeant Major James H. Russell, which recounts details of a march made outbound from Fort Snelling in Minneapolis (MN) to Devils Lake (DT) and back. The expedition supposedly met General Sully but actually arrived  after Sully had left. FOR REFERENCE USE ONLY (12 pages).

21278 Lewis Cass Hunt
Letters from Lewis Cass Hunt, Lieutenant Colonel of the 20th United States Infantry, to Henry G. Thomas, a brevet general from the Civil War then serving as a captain in Hunt's regiment. The letters dating from 1869-1875 were sent from Fort Abercrombie, the 1876 letter was sent from Fort Totten, Dakota Territory. Hunt and Thomas had both been Union brigadier generals during the Civil War, and were now regimental officers on frontier duty in the downsized postwar army. Hunt wrote most of these letters from Fort Abercrombie in North Dakota, a half-abandoned post with a company or two under his command. The first letter is meant to encourage a struggling old comrade with a message of patience: "The result of my experience of life, its ups and downs, has led me to adopt the rule of doing nothing whenever I was in doubt. . . . You certainly have been very unlucky in losing your post. . . . I mourn my removal, which I presume by fighting I might have avoided" (July 4, 1869). Thomas soon secured transfer to Hunt's regiment, and was stationed at remote Fort Totten. The other letters reflect an old friendship of kindred spirits--sharing volumes of Augustine's Confessions and Voltaire, and rumors of the regiment's internal politics. The final letter is written after Hunt's transfer to Fort Totten and the promotion of Hunt to major: "I congratulate you on your promotion and your luck in escaping a black regiment." Commenting on politics, he adds that "Ulysses is driving the last nail into the coffin of the Republican Party... A party that might, decently managed, have ruled the country for 40 years." Hunt consistently addresses Thomas by his old rank of "General" (6 items).

21304 Hugh E. Craig
Transcript of Hugh Craig's diary, 1865-1866, and scans from his time in Pembina (D.T.). Diary deals with the Civil War and Indian Wars in Minnesota, and Forts Abercrombie and Pembina. Craig was a Sergeant in Co. B, Independent Cavalry of Minnesota and member of the Minnesota House of Representatives. (26 digital items, 14.9MB).

80084 Wahnahtah
1872; 1896
Consists of two good conduct certificates (one signed by Henry Hastings Sibley), and an updated portion of a treaty between the Chippewa and the Sisseton and the Yanktonai Sioux. (3 items)


1347 Whitestone Hill: The True Story
Jacobson, Clair
90 minute reel-to-reel master
Recorded by KEYA radio on June 7, 1981

2046 The Court Martial of Capt. Thomas Custer: A Ghost Story of the Little Big Horn
Written by R. Kram. TDR Productions. Copyright 1987. [donated by Susan Dingle, SHSND]

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