Every armed conflict gives forth a soldier who stands to push the norms of battle: every skirmish becomes a triumphant exercise of bold strategy and daring feats; every dawn sees the exhaustive work of warriors fighting for survival and victory. During the Civil War, new, more powerful weapons were changing the way wars were fought. Courageous soldiers were being forged by the plight of a nation divided, and, in one of our nation’s most trying times, there were men who stood out like no other.
Born in New Rumley, Ohio on December 5, 1839 to Emanuel and Marie Custer, George Armstrong was named after a minister in hopes that he might join the clergy. However, Emanuel taught his son roughness from an early age. Always the trickster and full of distractions, Custer’s future was cloudy and unpredictable.
In 1856, he began his life instructing grammar school. It was not long before he grew tired of this profession and set his sights on West Point. It was here, at the U.S Military Academy, that Custer’s future was secured. When the War Between the States broke out, the course was shortened from five years to four.
George Armstrong Custer graduated from West Point in the year the Civil War began. He quickly distinguished himself as one of the Union’s most aggressive and fearless cavalry leaders. He would continue to climb the ranks, proving himself on and off the battlefield through his gallant and meritorious services.
On May 24, 1862, as General John G. Barnard and his staff were discussing a potential crossing point on the Chickahominy River based on the depth of the water, Custer, determined to prove his worth, dashed forward on his horse out into the middle of the river. The act gained him notoriety among high-ranking officers. He would continue to distinguish himself as a brave risk-taker and audacious soldier.
When Brevet Lieutenant Colonel Alfred Pleasonton was promoted to Major General of U.S. Volunteers, he immediately began replacing political generals with “commanders who were prepared to fight, to personally lead mounted attacks.” Custer was just the type of aggressive leader he was looking for.
On June 29, 1863, Custer was promoted to Brevet Brigadier General of Volunteers. At the age of just 23 he became the youngest brigadier general of the Union Army.
“The Boy General,” as he would come to be known, quickly set about implementing his bold leadership style on his brigade. He would continue to steadily rise in rank and responsibility. By the war’s end, he held the rank of Major General and commanded an entire Cavalry Division. ‘The Boy General” became a well-respected and courageous leader worthy of following into battle.
After the war, he continued his life as a soldier and leader on the western frontier. On June 25, 1876, during the Battle of Little Big Horn, Custer and his men were out-numbered and died in what would become “Custer’s Last Stand.” After this death, his controversial and bold leadership style became his enduring legacy. As a folk and myth-like hero persona grew to define him, the public would come to view him as a tragic military hero and exemplary gentleman who sacrificed his life for his country.
The element of human drama that played out in cities and countrysides of our nation during the Civil War continues to intrigue and fascinate us. It was a trial-by-fire that ultimately helped establish a more lasting, stable United States of America. General Custer provided no small part in helping to preserve this union that we take for granted today.
A Museum-Quality 1861 Navy Revolver
Only 250 Available
For this Tribute, we selected one of the most gracefully styled of all revolvers: a Model 1861 Navy Revolver. In every phrase of its conception, design, execution, and in every detail of its finish, we have held true to the goal of creating a handsome Tribute to General George A. Custer. This Tribute is a fully functional, working Navy Model 1861 cap & ball .36 caliber blackpowder revolver with a 7 ½ inch barrel. Each Tribute available in the edition is a meticulously detailed recreation of the legendary Colt 1861 Navy Revolver, created by the incomparable artisans of A. Uberti. For decades, their craftsmen have combined modern high-grade materials with time-honored methods of finishing to create exquisite, working reproductions of history’s greatest firearms.
This Tribute is being issued in an exclusive edition with only 250 available revolvers. Craftsmen commissioned specifically for this project by America Remembers decorate each revolver in elegant 24-karat gold and nickel with an overall blued-finish. The blued barrel is beautifully complemented by hand-polished walnut grips. In addition, craftsmen hand-polish and decorate the trigger, hammer, and trigger guard in stylish 24-karat gold, adding a touch of elegance to this museum-quality Tribute.
Although less than 39,000 were ever produced, the 1861 Navy saw widespread use during the Civil War. While similar in design to its forerunners, the 1851 and 1860 Models, the rounded barrel, different rammer, and lighter recoil made the 1861 Navy the preferred sidearm of many cavalry soldiers, including, reportedly, General Custer. Today, the Model 1861 Navy remains a must have for firearm enthusiasts and serious Civil War collectors. Take a closer look at its impressive barrel and sleek frame, and you can easily understand why it remains one of the most sought after and beloved firearms of all time.
This Tribute will represent the true meaning of strength, integrity, and character. It will exist as a constant reminder for future generations of an event that shaped our nation, resulting in a more unified United States of America. Today, we must continue to uphold the principles of duty and honor, and remain committed to ensuring the freedom and democracy we have enjoyed for almost 250 years.
• On both sides of the frame, set against the backdrop of 24-karat gold scrollwork, a bugle is shown. Bugles were vitally important to the war as they sounded out the structure of a soldier’s day and provided orders on the battlefield.
• Centered on both sides of the barrel, banners read “Gen. George A. Custer Civil War Tribute.” Also featured, at the muzzle end of the barrel, are general’s stars, similar to the ones General Custer would have worn on his uniform. In addition, the barrel also features, on both sides, cavalry swords between the classic scrollwork.
• Both sides of the cylinder, frame, and barrel feature classic scrollwork that was a hallmark of the finest 19th and 20th century firearms. The centerpiece of this remarkable Tribute is the elegantly gold and nickel decorated cylinder which presents stunning portraits of General Custer in uniform.
• Along the backstrap, a banner reads the war’s beginning and end, “1861-1865,” with General Custer’s signature prominently featured between the dates. At the top of the backstrap, two revolvers, similar to the ones General Custer was presented with, are pictured with their crossing barrels.
Display Case Available
An optional, luxuriously lined custom-built wooden display case with locking glass lid is available for purchase to protect your Tribute.
Since the “General George A. Custer Civil War Tribute” is a working blackpowder revolver, we will arrange delivery through UPS to ship directly to your home.
I wish to reserve the “General George A. Custer Civil War Tribute“, a working 1861 Navy revolver, at the current issue price of $1,595. Each revolver is numbered within the edition limit of 250 and is accompanied by a Certificate of Authenticity. Thirty day return privilege.
Please charge my credit card a deposit of $195 per revolver. I will pay the balance at the rate of $100 per month, with no interest or carrying charge.
* All orders are subject to acceptance and credit verification prior to shipment. Sales tax is required in certain states and will be added. Shipping and handling will be added to each order. Virginia residents please add sales tax.