Custer, Cody, and Grand Duke Alexis

Douglas D. Scott_/custer-cody-grand-duke-alexisImagine going on a buffalo hunt with Sioux Chief Spotted Tail, Buffalo Bill Cody and Gen. George Custer. Oh, and throw in Col. George Forsyth of Beecher Island fame for good measure. Pure fantasy, except it actually happened

in January 1872, when Gen. Phil Sheridan hosted the visiting Grand Duke Alexis of Russia on a “royal buffalo hunt” in Nebraska. In Custer, Cody, and Grand Duke Alexis: Historical Archaeology of the Royal Buffalo Hunt (University of Oklahoma Press, $24.95), authors Douglas D. Scott, Peter Bleed and Stephen Damm combine historical sources (including Russian ones) and findings from an archaeological survey of the hunters’ base camp on Red Willow Creek, all of which now mark this as the standard work on an improbable moment in Western history. Readers will be particularly intrigued by the unfamiliar photographs of life at “Camp Alexis.”

 

––Brian W. Dippie, author of Custer’s Last Stand: The Anatomy of an American Myth


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