Libbie Custer Gets Her Due

August 8, 2014

Elizabeth Bacon Custer Enjoys the Limelight
Even After Her Famous Husband Dies

Custer, the blacksmith’s son, started his upward journey by setting his sights on the local judge’s daughter, Elizabeth Bacon. Libbie Custer is the main character of this story.She was quite a catch. Beautiful. Smart. Ambitious. Determined to live the life she wanted and not the one her prominent station in Monroe, Michigan, afforded.

She and General Custer were a team. She followed him from skirmish to skirmish during the Civil War. She camped with the men and departed for safer territory only when a major battle was anticipated.

She and Custer were devoted, but not without an occasional battle of their own.

In real life, Libbie Custer became an entrepreneur. She wrote about her travels with the army. Following her husband’s death, she went on the worldwide lecture circle to defend the family honor and preserve her husband’s side of the story. She was nowhere near the battle. She was waiting for return of the soldiers with the other wives at Fort Abraham Lincoln. But history belongs to the people who take the time to write it and Libbie had more than 50 years to tell the saga of the Battle of the Little Big Horn as she hoped it happened.

She had a front row seat for much of the tumultuous history of Industrial Age.

She was successful and spent much of her time in Manhattan. She truly loved the city.

Still Standing focuses on what Libbie Custer could have done with her fame. What she actually did was tell her husband’s story to her dying day.

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July 22, 2014


Most of the characters in Still Standing are drawn from real life.

In Still Standing, the Custers encounter a character named Pinckney. This character is drawn from the real historical character, George Washington Plunkitt.

The Politician and the Shoeshine Stand

Plunkitt of Tammany Hall served as New York State Senator and became known for his political discourses delivered from a bootblack stand in front of the New York County Courthouse.

He is best known for his views on graft. He practiced honest graft, in his view, buying up properties he knew would be needed for public projects. Had he been dishonest he would have bought the properties and then lobbied for the projects to be built on his property.

The difference was clear to him. Defeated in 1904, he published his political speeches. They make for entertaining reading and are available courtesy of the Gutenberg Project online.

He is a lively and engaging character. Have a read!……

We’ll tell you about other inspirations for the characters of Still Standing in later posts.

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