General George A. Custer wearing a double breasted jacket that he designed and had tailor-made for himself in the Autumn of 1863.
General George A. Custer's Third Personal Civil War Cavalry Guidon.
This flag was handmade by the wife of General Custer, Libby Custer, in 1864. This flag was only flown when Custer was on the field. This was one of Custer's more famous flags, as it served with him in the Civil War while commanding the US 3rd Cavalry Division from 1864-65. After the war, it was sent to his home in Monroe, Michigan. Upon his death at the Little Big Horn, it was given by Libby to his brother, Nevin, who kept it in the family until it was sold at auction 130 years later.
There is a companion flag, the 3rd Calvary Division guidon that served with this guidon. The two guidons were always with Custer when he was on the field. After the war, the guidons were sent to Custer's home in Monroe, Michigan, where they stayed until his death in 1876. After the Little Big Horn battle, his wife Libby gave the two flags to his brother (personal guidon) and sister (3rd Div.), separating the flags for 130 years until they were reunited at auction.
Major General George A. Custer's Headquarters with his two guidons, Winchester, Virginia, December 25, 1864.
The field is formed in the design of a swallowtail guidon, composed of two horizontal wool/bunting bars, the upper red and the lower dark blue. Appliquéd by hand to both sides in white cotton are two crossed sabers, unsheathed and edges up, 37 1/2" long overall. A white cotton heading, 3/4" wide has been sewn to the leading edge and bears three hand sewn button hole eyelets.
Inventing Custer: Legends of the Little Big Horn
25 May 1996 to 2 September 1996
The Autry National Center
4700 Western Heritage Way
Los Angeles, CA
Buffalo Bill Historic Center,
First Presidio Exhibit
General George Armstrong Custer's Third Personal Cavalry Headquarters Guidon
Second Presidio Exhibit, 2003 - Gallery III
General George A. Custer's Third Personal Cavalry Headquarters Guidon
11 November 2008
Tiger 21 Meeting, Muir Room
Four Seasons Hotel, San Francisco, CA
University of California - Santa Cruz
Board of Councilors Meeting, Rare Flags Exhibit
Santa Cruz, CA
7 June 2012
ZFC Significant Flag
Item is Framed
Wright, Horatio, editor, Flags of the Army of the United States Carried During The War of the Rebellion 1861-1865, To Designate the Headquarters of the different Armies, Army Corps, Divisions and Brigades, or "Designating Flags of the United States Army, 1861-1865", Philadelphia, Burk & McFetridge, 1887/1888. P. Gen Custer's Flags.
Katz, D. Mark, Custer in Photographs, New York, Bonanza Books, 1985. P 35.
Merington, Marguerite, editor, The Custer Story: The Life and Intimate Letters of General George A. Custer, University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln,1987, pp. 140-141 7 147-148.
Woodhead, Henry, Editor, Howard Michael Madaus, Civil War Flag Authority Echoes of Glory: Arms and Equipment of The Union - Flags. Alexandria, Time-Life Books, 1998. P. 289.
Madaus, Howard M.- Whitney Smith, The American Flag: Two Centuries of Concord and Conflict, VZ Publications, Santa Cruz, 2006. pp. 86-87.
Schrambling, Regina, "A Lifelong Pledge." Collection, Published by Robb Report, June 2014, p. 48H.
• Elizabeth "Libbie" Custer: Flag Hand-sewn in summer of 1864, and used by General Custer until Dinwiddie Court House, Virginia on March 31, 1865.
• Retained by General George Armstrong Custer.
• Retained by Lt. Colonel (Brevet Major General) G.A. Custer until passing, 1876.
• By descent in the Nevin Custer family to G.A. Custer nephew Charles Custer and thence to grand nephew Richard Custer, Monterey, CA, until 1995.
• Sold via Butterfield & Butterfield Auction House of San Francisco, CA, to the Zaricor Flag Collection, 1995.