When the park ranger asked the crowd gathered outside if they had ever visited the Little Bighorn Battlefield before, I think I was the only person that had been there. But I had never seen a presentation, shall we say, performance, like this.

I had a couple of friends from Colorado in town for a very quick trip. We were going to camp out, hit the water on the Bighorn Canyon, and pop in to check out Crow Fair on Saturday morning. We thought we would do a quick visit to the Little Bighorn Battlefield just so they could see it as well.

We stopped into the visitor's center, walked up to the monument, and got a quick look at the battlefield. As we headed back to our pickup, the park ranger, who so graciously greeted us inside the museum, saw the three of us and told us we were going to want to hear the talk. We were in a rush, but we reluctantly stopped and listened for a few minutes. 30-plus minutes later and we weren't going anywhere.

This retired teacher, Ranger Steve Adelson, captivated the crowd with a performance you could not get out of the best actors in Hollywood. He had the entire history memorized and spoke with a command presence that made you think you were listening to Lt. Col. Ollie North's "War Stories."

I'm telling you, if you get a chance to make it out to the battlefield, make sure you attend one of Ranger Adelson's talks. I was also wondering if he may be interested in doing talks at local schools and traveling the state a little bit.

The below video will give you a taste of Ranger Adelson's presentation, but I gotta tell you, it is something you have to witness firsthand.

According to the National Park Service, Ranger Adelson has had a fascination with "Custer's Last Stand" since boyhood:

He has been an avid student of this epic battle for the past 25 years. His book Little Bighorn, Voices from a Distant Wind comes packaged with a DVD of his powerful presentation, ‘Contested Ground,’ filmed at the battlefield where the events chronicled in the book took place.


Credit Aaron Flint.
Credit Aaron Flint.


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