Founded in 2014 by music scholar and composer Elam Rotem and musician
and musicologist Joerg-Andreas Boetticher, Early Music Sources is
designed to "simplify the access to the vast amount of online early
music sources." As of this write-up, this resource contains two
databases and a YouTube channel. The databases allow visitors to explore
over 1,500 articles, books, and manuscripts published between the 15th
and 20th centuries. Visitors can conduct a text search of these items or
browse by category, such as Basso Continuo-English; keyboard
instruments; or tuning and temperament. Many of these materials have
been digitized and can be accessed for free. Meanwhile, the Iconography
Database, which "focuses on depictions of music-making that may record
aspects of contemporaneous performance practice," features 152
fascinating works of art, which visitors are invited to browse by
Century, Instrument, or Category. Finally, visitors won't want to miss
the site's delightful YouTube channel, which offers accessible and
engaging educational videos about a variety of topics related to the
early music movement.
On June 25, 1876, George Armstrong Custer and the 265 men under his command lost their lives in the Battle of Little Big Horn, often referred to as Custer’s Last Stand.
Educated at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, Custer proved
his brilliance and daring as a cavalry officer of the Union Army in the
Civil War. Major General George McClellan
appointed the twenty-three-year-old Custer as brigadier general in
charge of a Michigan cavalry brigade. By 1864, Custer was leading the
Third Cavalry Division in General Philip Sheridan‘s
Shenandoah Valley campaign. Throughout the fall, the Union Army moved
across the valley—burning homes, mills, and fields of crops.
This sketch of Custer’s division retiring from Mount Jackson
in the Shenandoah Valley on October 7, 1864, is by Alfred Waud, a Civil
War sketch artist who documented the war for the press. Sketch artists
provided the public’s only glimpse of battle at a time when the shutter
speed of cameras was not fast enough to capture action. Waud routinely
ventured dangerously close to the fighting, portraying more intimately
than any other artist, the drama and horror of the Civil War.
Tapped to pursue General Robert E. Lee‘s army as it fled from Richmond, Custer himself received the Confederate flag of truce when Lee surrendered at Appomattox Court House.
At the end of the Civil War, he was commissioned to the western
frontier as part of an army campaign to impress and intimidate hostile
Plains Indians with a show of U.S. military might.
After gold was discovered in the Black Hills
in 1874, white miners flocked into territory ceded to the Sioux less
than ten years earlier. Although the second Treaty of Fort Laramie
(1868) clearly granted the tribe exclusive use of the Black Hills, in
the winter of 1875, the U.S. ordered the Sioux to return to their
reservation by the end of January. With many Indians out of the range of
communication and many others hostile to the order, the U.S. Army
prepared for battle.
On May 17, 1876, Lieutenant Colonel Custer led the 750 men of the 7th
United States Cavalry Regiment out of Fort Abraham Lincoln, Dakota
Territory. Commanded by Brigadier General Alfred H. Terry,
Custer’s division was part of an expedition intended to locate and rout
tribes organized for resistance under Chief Sitting Bull. Hoping to
entrap Sitting Bull in the Little Big Horn area, Terry ordered Custer to
follow the Rosebud River while he brought the majority of the men down
the Yellowstone River. After meeting at the mouth of the Little Big
Horn, they planned to force the Lakota Sioux and the Cheyenne back to their reservations.
Custer found Sitting Bull encamped on the Little Bighorn River in
Montana. Instead of waiting for Terry, the lieutenant colonel chose to
wage an immediate attack. He divided his forces into several groups and
headed out. Quickly encircled by their enemy, the five companies under
Custer’s immediate command were slaughtered in less than an hour. Over
the next two days, the remnants of the 7th Cavalry fought for their
lives as they waited in vain for Custer to relieve them.
On June 27, the Indians retreated as reinforcements arrived.
Expecting to meet Custer and prepare for battle, General Terry
discovered the bodies of Custer and his men. Nearly a third of the men
of the 7th Cavalry, including Custer and his brother, died at Little Big
Horn. A stunning but short-lived victory for Native Americans, the Battle of Little Big Horn galvanized the public against the Indians. In response, federal troops poured into the Black Hills.
While many Native Americans surrendered to federal authorities,
Sitting Bull sought refuge in Canada in 1877. Four years later, with his
supporters on the brink of starvation, Sitting Bull returned to the
U.S. at Standing Rock Agency in North Dakota. There, he fought the sale
of tribal lands under the Dawes Severalty Act and participated in the Ghost Dance
Movement—a cultural and religious revitalization among Native
Americans. Threatened by a religious awakening that promised the end of
white dominance, federal authorities attempted to take custody of
Sitting Bull in 1890. He was killed in the affray sparked by the