Lt. Colonel George Armstrong Custer. Custer's Last Stand. The Battle of the Little Bighorn. Who was he? Hero, villain, or just a guy doing his job?

I posed that question to Gary Stewart, the man who has played the role of George Custer at countless reenactments of the Battle of the Little Bighorn.

Stewart just wrapped up his 23rd year taking part in the reenactment during the 145th anniversary of the battle this past weekend near Crow Agency, Montana. "I've probably been killed over 76 times," he told me as he reflected on all the years he has taken part in the reenactment ceremony on the Real Bird family land.

Stewart says it is an honor to play the role of Custer. He says he loves our country, he loves the Crow Tribe, and he loves putting on the reenactment every year near the battlefield.

You can listen to the full interview below as I asked him what it is like to play the role of George Custer. We also got his take on cancel culture, and efforts to erase American history.

But first, what does he think about Custer? Hero, villain, or just doing his job?

Stewart: George Custer was a civil war general, he was the youngest brigadier general and in the Union army. He then became a major general in 1865. I don't think that he ever lost a battle. He captured many Confederate battle flags, helped preserve the union, his crushing defeat of Jeb Stuart behind the lines on the Pickett's Charge prevented a mishap there at Gettysburg- which would have been a confederate victory. So the Union Army won that and he's credited with many more victories. But mainly- he helped preserve the union, keep the states together. And he was, he was not the Indian hater that people like to think he was. He fought for Indian rights. He was criticized even for fighting for Indian rights. He uncovered many different policies that were crooked and corrupt. And he went to Washington just before this campaign to fight for the rights of the American native Plains Indians. So if people really read their history, they will see that George Armstrong Custer is not the villain that they think he is. He's an American hero.

Click below for the full audio:

Here are a couple of photos of Gary Stewart dressed in the role of Custer the morning before the reenactment as the parade passed by the battlefield entrance shortly after 10 a.m.

Credit Aaron Flint
Credit Aaron Flint

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