|Part of The Second Mexican War|
|United States||Confederate States|
|Commanders and leaders|
|George A. Custer||???|
For many years, Colonel George Custer had been stationed at Fort Dodge, Kansas, fighting Kiowa Indians who frequently raided the state. Having being too late to stop them, Custer grew ever more frustrated. In 1881, when tensions between the CSA and USA boiled over the purchase of Sonora and Chihuahua from the Mexicans, Custer finally got his chance for revenge. While waiting for orders, two Gatling guns arrived at Fort Dodge in preparation for the war. Shortly afterwards, a telegram arrived announcing that war had been declared.
Right after the news of hostilities had been delivered to the whole fort, Tom Custer took his brother aside and told him of an idea he came up with involving the Gatling guns. Liking what he heard, Custer agreed, and organized a raiding party to cross the border and lure the Indians into an ambush. Leaving Ft. Dodge, they headed south, and crossed the border. After arriving, Custer ordered Sgt. Buckley to see up his guns. The sergeant chose a gently rising little hillock with a commanding view in all directions while the guns' other chief, Sgt. Neufeld did the same like wise. His ambush now prepared, Custer and his men rode off to find the Kiowa.
While searching along a river, the party ran into a cattle ranch. They automatically charged, firing their guns wildly into the air, scattering the Kiowa, and forcing them to flee back to their village. Custer's men wisely followed from a distance, until they reached the village down by the bed of a creek. They rode through the town, causing havoc and rode out the other end. By now, the Kiowa were stirred up as somewhere between fifty to a hundred gave chase on their own horses. Custer's men then wheeled about and headed east, back the way they came.
Riding like mad, they made it across the plains to Sergeants Buckley and Neufeld, losing two men in the ensuing chase. The remaining troopers raced to the crest of the hill and dismounted, as if preparing for a Last Stand. The unsuspecting Kiowa charged head long towards Custer’s men, and into the firing line of the Gatling guns. As the Kiowa thundered up the hill, both guns opened up, decimating more than half the war party. Caught off guard and unprepared, the Kiowa were immediately routed and those who weren't killed out right, fled back the way they came.
As the US troopers cheered, their victory was short lived as a company's worth of Confederate Cavalry arrived. Undeterred, the US troopers once more prepared for battle. Like the Kiowa before, the Confederates charged the hill, and were cut down by the Gatling guns' fire. Custer's troops added their own fire to the melee. The Confederates just as quickly broke and ran, leaving the US troopers ecstatic at their victory.
Custer's raid was the first engagement of the war, and being a victory, it was greatly hyped in the US press. Unfortunately, Custer's victory did not earn him the promotion he thought he rightly deserved. Embittered, Custer was forced to patrol the US side Confederate border, as Indian tribes and Confederate Cavalry struck back with a vengeance in retaliation.
An unfortunate side effect from the victory was that since the US had struck the first blow, this showed the world that the USA was the aggressor in this war. After this victory, both England and France issued their own ultimatum. Cease all military activity against the CSA within 12 hours or face war. US President James Blaine responded by expelling all French and English diplomats.This would be the only battle the US would win against the Confederate States during the whole war.