June 25, 1876, is a date that shall live in controversy. Even if Lieutenant Colonel (General to his men) George Armstrong Custer came back from the grave to tell his side of the story, the controversy would still not die. The Battle of the Little Bighorn is like a 10,000-piece jigsaw puzzle on the south-central Montana landscape – the stuff of legend and historical gamesmanship. Custer and more than a third of the elite 7th Cavalry Regiment lost their lives in an epic struggle with the Plains Indians. Although the deadly conflict at the Little Bighorn is a multifaceted tale that rivals the Alamo as the most famous military clash in the American West, the main focus has always been the man in command of the losing side – thus, the battle's popular alternative name, Custer's Last Stand.
Countless historians, authors and amateur scholars more often than not after coming down with a bad case of the Custer bug and finding it impossible to shake have analyzed the battle. The analyses have sometimes been in direct conflict, since the so-called experts have taken different routes in trying to explain the sequence of events, why things happened and who was to blame (Custer, his supporting cast or his bosses) for the 129-year-old U.S. military defeat at the hands of Sitting Bull's people. The controversy has not lost its intensity through the years. Recent archeological discoveries on the battlefield have cast new light on the engagement and opened the door to new interpretations and, yes, new controversies concerning Custer's Last Stand.