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Book Review
Sioux Warrior vs US Cavalryman
Combat: Sioux Warrior versus US Cavalryman, The Little Bighorn campaign 1876–77
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by: Randy L Harvey [ HARV ]

INTRODUCTION
This is a review by Randy L Harvey of Combat: Sioux Warrior versus US Cavalryman, The Little Bighorn campaign 1876–77 by author Ron Field and illustrator Adam Hook.

THE AUTHOR:
Ron Field was born in Herford, England, and was educated in Cheltenham where he gained a Bachelor of Education (Hons) degree. He is presently Head of History at the Cotswold School in Bourton-on-the-Water. He was awarded the Fulbright Scholarship in 1982 and taught history at Piedmont High School in California from 1982-83. Ron has travelled extensively in the US conducting research at numerous libraries, archives and museums.

THE ILLUSTRATOR:
Adam Hook studied graphic design, and began his work as an illustrator in 1983. He specializes in detailed historical reconstructions, and has illustrated Osprey titles on subjects as diverse as the Aztecs, the Ancient Greeks, Roman battle tactics, several 19th-century American subjects, the modern Chinese Army, and a number of books in the Fortress series. His work features in exhibitions and publications throughout the world.

BODY OF THE TEXT
HISTORY
    In December 1875, following the discovery of gold deposits, the US Government ordered the indigenous Sioux population of the Black Hills in what is now South Dakota and Wyoming to return to the Great Sioux Reservation. When the Sioux refused, the US Army sent forces into the area, sparking a conflict that would make Lieutenant Colonel George Custer, Chief Sitting Bull, Crazy Horse, and others household names around the world. Examining three key engagements in the Great Sioux War – The Rosebud, the Little Bighorn, and Slim Buttes – this fully illustrated study assesses the forces fighting on both sides, casting light on the origins, tactics, armament, and battlefield performance of the US cavalry and their Sioux opponents at the height of the Indian Wars.**

THE BOOK
Osprey Publications Ltd
has released Sioux Warrior versus US Cavalryman, The Little Bighorn campaign 1876–77 as Number 43 in their Combat series. It is a soft cover book with 80 pages. Included with the text are black and white photographs and color photographs, color illustrations, detailed captions and more. It has a 2019 copyright and the ISBN is 978-1-4728-3188-0. Providing insights into the realities of front-line combat and using innovative split-screen artwork, expert analysis combined with gripping first-hand accounts and strategic and tactical maps the book details three significant conflicts between the Native American Sioux and the United States Cavalry in 1876.

THE CONTENTS
- Introduction
- The Opposing Sides
- Recruitment, training, and organization
- Appearance, weapons and equipment
- Conduct in battle
- The Rosebud
- June 17, 1876
- The Little Bighorn
- June 25, 1876
- Slim Buttes
- September 9-10, 1876
- Analysis
- The Rosebud
- The Little Bighorn
- Slim Buttes
- Aftermath
- Orders of Battle
- Select Bibliography
- Index

THE TEXT
Author Ron Field covers three different battles between the Sioux and US Cavalry during the Little Bighorn campaign of 1876 through 1877. Ron Field discusses three main battles between the Sioux and the US Cavalry during the years of 1876 and 1877. The three battles discussed are the battle of the Rosebud, the battle of the Little Bighorn (also know as Custer’s Last Stand) and the battle of Slim Buttes. Ron Field provides insight from both sides of each conflict giving information such as first hand accounts from active participants in the fighting, actions taken by both sides as well as the outcome of each battle. Ron Field gives a step-by-step narration of each of the battles which with the accompanying maps helps place the reader at the battles and makes it easy for the reader to understand what took place and why. As well as providing information on the three separate battles Ron Field details training and organization of the US cavalry, weapons and equipment used by both sides as well as the fighting techniques of the combatants. Along with his own words Ron Field has also provided several quotes and first-hand accounts from key individuals providing specific details and pertinent information. The text in the book is nicely written and well detailed. As I read through the text, I didn’t notice any spelling or grammatical errors. Grammar and spelling might not be an important factor to everyone however it is something that I take notice of and pass on my findings. I feel that if the text is well written then it shows that the author has taken the time to be a professional with their writing. Anyone wanting to add an excellent reference and history book on the battles of the Rosebud, the Little Bighorn and Slim Buttes during the Little Bighorn campaign of 1876-1877 to their personal library will be pleased with this very informative and interesting book.

THE PHOTOGRAPHS
A total of 43 black and white photographs and 5 color photographs are included in this volume. The photographs range from wide angle photographs to close-up detailed photographs. The photographs are period photographs of key individuals, paintings and illustrations of the period as well as illustrations taken from US cavalry training manuals, one of which I have attached as a scan. I would say that the photographs that were chosen for this book were for the most part lesser known photographs as opposed to photographs that are featured in many other titles that deal with the same subject matter. The majority of the photographs are clear and easily viewable, however a few have an out of focus look to them and some appear to be too dark, and others appear too light. This is typical for the discussed periods of history and consideration needs to be given to the fact that some of the photographs are over one hundred years old and the quality of the photographs is of no fault of the author and do not take anything away from the book. Author Ron Field stuck to the title of the book and chose subject specific photographs and did not include photographs that strayed from the main subject of the book. The majority, if not all, of the photographs will prove to be a wealth of information to anyone interested in Native Americans, the American Indian Wars and the uniforms, weapons and warfare of the period due to the details they contain.

THE ILLUSTRATIONS
There are 7 color illustrations and 2 accompanying black and white illustrations by illustrator Adam Hook. Two of the color illustrations are accompanied by a black and white copy of the same illustration that describes the scene and points out and describes key areas of interest. The illustrations are very well done, nicely detailed and are of:

Plate A

Sioux warrior – The Rosebud, Montana Territory, June 17, 1876. (see attached scan)

- Two-page front and back illustrations of a Sioux warrior mounted on a horse with a well written caption that details Sioux weapons, dress, and equipment of the period as well as detailing the markings on the horse and what they represent.

Plate B

Sergeant, Co. D, 3rd Cavalry – The Rosebud, Montana Territory, June 17, 2876. (see attached scan)

- Two-page front and back illustrations of a US Cavalry sergeant mounted on a horse with a well written caption that details cavalry weapons, dress, and equipment of the period.

Plate C

Last Stand Hill

- A two-page illustration depicting the fighting between the Native Americans and the US cavalry on Last Stand Hill during the Battle of the Little Bighorn. On the following page is an informative caption, detailing what is taking place as well as identifying key individuals portrayed in the scene.

Plate D

“The most beautiful Indian combat…”

- A two-page double scene depicting the clash between Sioux warriors led by Crazy Horse and US Cavalry soldiers of the 5th Cavalry of the Bighorn and Yellowstone Expedition under Brigadier General George R. Crook that are in a skirmish line during the Battle of Slim Buttes in the Dakota Territory. The two-page illustration provides the view from the Sioux warriors point-of-view and the cavalry’s skirmish line point-of-view. On the following page there are detailed captions, which accompany two black and white copies of the same colored illustrations, with informative captions detailing what is taking place in the two scenes as well as identifying key individuals portrayed.

Please refer to the scan that I have provided so that you can judge the illustrations for yourself.

THE CAPTIONS
The captions are well written and explain the accompanying photographs and illustrations in great detail eliminating any doubt as to what is shown. The captions go into very specific detail as to the specific individuals shown, types of clothing worn, equipment carried and used, dates and locations and other such pertinent information. I was very impressed by Ron Field’s captions as they are very helpful to the reader due to their detailed content as opposed to other captions that I have seen that are very brief and lacking in detail.

MAPS
There are 4 color maps included in this volume and they are of:

- The Great Sioux War – detailed map and map key showing the locations of the Rosebud, Little Bighorn and Slim Buttes battles in the Montana and Dakota territories as well as other areas of interest in the Wyoming and Nebraska territories.

- The Rosebud, June 17, 1876 – detailed map and map key showing actions taken by both sides during the battle.

- The Little Bighorn, June 25-26, 1876 – detailed map and map key showing actions taken by both sides during the battle.

- Slim Buttes, September 8-10, 1876 – detailed map and map key showing actions taken by both sides during the battle.

PROFILES

There are 2 individual profiles included in this volume and they provide information on:
    - Oglala Sioux War Chief Low Dog (Sunka Kucigala)
    - United States 7th Cavalry Sergeant Daniel A. Kanipe
NOTES
There are 2 notes included in this volume and they are:

- Acknowledgements
- Artist’s Note

INFORMATIONAL CHARTS
There are 2 informational charts included in this volume and they are:
    - Key to military symbols
    - Key to unit identification

CONCLUSION
As with the other Osprey Publishing titles I was impressed with this book. This is a very nice reference book that contains a well written informative text, many subject specific photographs and illustrations, well detailed captions and more, all detailing three significant conflicts between the Native American Sioux and the United States Cavalry in 1876. As with the other Osprey Publishing titles, I would have no hesitation to recommend this book to others as it will be a welcome addition to one’s personal reference library.

Osprey Publishing also offers Combat: Sioux Warrior versus US Cavalryman,
The Little Bighorn campaign 1876–77
as:

eBook (ePub)
eBook (PDF)

Combat: Sioux Warrior versus US Cavalryman, The Little Bighorn campaign 1876–77 is also available as a Kindle version through Amazon.

PRICE:

UK £13.99 / US $22.00 / CAN $29.00

REFERENCES


Atlas of the Sioux Wars
Second Edition
Charles D. Collins, Jr.
Dr. William Glenn Robertson, Consulting Editor
Combat Studies Institute Press

Native American Clothing An Illustrated History
Theodore Brasser
Firefly Books

Native American Hunting and Fighting Skills
Colin F. Taylor
The Lyons Press

Native American Weapons
Colin F. Taylor
The Lyons Press

The Indians
The Old West
Time/Life Books

The Great Chiefs
The Old West
Time-Life Books

The Soldiers
The Old West
Time-Life Books

North American Indian
David Murdoch
Dorling Kindersley Eyewitness Books

Warriors at the Little Bighorn 1876
Men-at-Arms 408
Richard Hook
Osprey Publishing

Little Big Horn 1876
Custer’s Last Stand
Campaign 39
Peter Panzeri
Osprey Publishing

This book was provided to me by Osprey Publishing. Please be sure to mention that you saw the book reviewed here when you make your purchase.

** Quoted from the back cover of the book.
SUMMARY
Highs: Well written text and captions. Subject specific photographs and illustrations.
Lows: Nothing to mention.
Verdict: An excellent volume by Osprey Publishing. Definitely beneficial to the American Indian Wars enthusiast and historian.
  Scale: N/A
  Mfg. ID: 978-1-4728-3188-0
  PUBLISHED: Jan 12, 2020
  NATIONALITY: United States
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 91.62%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 90.24%

Our Thanks to Osprey Publishing!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Randy L Harvey (HARV)
FROM: WYOMING, UNITED STATES

I have been in the modeling hobby off and on since my youth. I build mostly 1/35 scale. However I work in other scales for aircraft, ships and the occasional civilian car kit. I also kit bash and scratch-build when the mood strikes. I mainly model WWI and WWII figures, armor, vehic...

Copyright ©2020 text by Randy L Harvey [ HARV ]. All rights reserved.



Comments

Thank you for getting this posted for me Fred. Randy
JAN 21, 2020 - 07:26 AM
   

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