Thursday, January 26, 2012

American Experience - Custer's Last Stand

The making of a myth. What a fantastic episode of the American Experience. You really get the full measure of a poor boy who understood fame. He lived at the edge, he a risk taker and daredevil. He is determined not to be ordinary.

Finished LAST in his class at Westpoint. He had a gift for command. He knows he has to risk his life to distinguish himself. He is on the firings line.

"He's the most recognizable man on the battlefield. He would be every sniper's target. He's wearing a big Sombrero with a feather in the cap - he's got a big scarlet neckerchief and a velvet jacket with gold braids. He was asking for it."

He never asked anyone to do what he wouldn't himself. He was in each and every battle of the worst war in US History. He had his own Immortals around him because he himself seemed immortal.

It was Custer who accepted the flag of surrender from Robert E. Lee at Appomattox.

He had a lot of photos made of him. He understood the important of image and media and popular culture. He markets his image. He is a dandy but had the bonifides to pull it off and back it up. He had a theatrical sensibility.

Peace is always more challenging than War.

His wife's maiden name was 'Bacon'.

Libby Custer went to the front to be with her husband. She wanted to be a part of his greatness. She was a truly magnificent woman.

He was there at the height of the Indian Wars. As the train headed west and the settlers followed.

He was fighting a guerrilla war only he didn't know that on a time.

"He has to be a great actor. He has to perform 'courage'."

1 comment:

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Some think of him as a genocidal monster.