Ralph Crawford 

Chief Gall...

Hunkpapas Sioux


The encampment on the Greasy Grass was two miles long.​ All was quiet, apparently a mild alert had been posted since Gall and the other chiefs were well aware of the approaching big dust, which meant man soldiers.  The people were not concerned and some probably didn't know about it, social dances had taken place the night before and the chance to visit among relatives and to court maidens from other tribes was nt being wasted by the young warriors.


The chiefs watched as Custer's troops circled hard around, exhausting their horses due to the mistaken belief that they had been detected earlier.  Contrarily, the Indians they found rifling through a lost pack box did not reach the camp to alert the others, so Custer gave himself away with the forced ride.  As Custer's dust floated high in the noon-day sky, Reno's men opened fire on the Blackfoot camp circle at the upper end of the assembled lodges.  In very little time, 2,000 warriors hastened to defend the south end of the village led by Gall, Crazy Horse and Crow King.  In less than a half hour the enemy had been routed and were entrenched on nearby Reno Hill.  


Fearful for the unprotected north end of the village, and still aware of the approaching troops, Crazy Horse and Crow King raced for the north.  Custer was now heading directly toward the camp.  Gall followed on a ridge to the east, and striking the trail they had made, came in behind the Seventh Cavalry, now facing Indians on three sides. 


Gall recalled later that the battle was brief, finished when the exhausted, frightened troopers were overrun by mounted braves.  Ironically, the three pronged attack against the village planned by Custer had been reversed.