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About Marcus Albert Reno
Marcus Albert Reno Birth: Nov. 15, 1834, Carrollton, Greene County, Illinois, USA - Death: Mar. 30, 1889, Washington, District of Columbia,District Of Columbia, USA
Spouse: Mary Hannah Ross Reno (1843 - 1874)
Civil War Union Brevet Brigadier General. As Major of the 7th United States Cavalry, he was the senior surviving officer from the Battle of the Little Big Horn, in which General George A. Custer and most of the 7th Cavalry were killed. Born in Carrollton, Illinois, the 4th of 7 children, where his father managed a hotel inn, he attended the United States Military Academy at West Point, graduating in 1857. During the Civil War, he served first as a Captain in the 1st United States Regular Cavalry before being assigned to staff positions. After serving as Chief of Staff to Brig, General William F "Baldy" Smith, as acting Assistant Inspector General on the staff of Brig. General Alfred T.A. Torbert, and as Chief of Staff of the Army of the Shenandoah Cavalry Corps, he was promoted to Colonel and commander of the 12th Pennsylvania Volunteer Cavalry. On March 13, 1865 he was brevetted Brigadier general, US Volunteers for "meritorious services during the war". Following the Civil War, he returned to his rank of Major, and was assigned to the 7th Cavalry in 1871. In the summer of 1876, he took part in a 3 column attack on the Sioux Indians, camped in Montana, in which Lieutenant Colonel George A. Custer was killed, along with almost 60 percent of the 7th Cavalry in the Battle of the Little Big Horn, June 25, 1876. Major Reno became the senior surviving officer, and is credited with saving what was left of the 7th Cavalry from destruction. Following the battle, he assumed acting command and participated in the remaining campaign, until returning to Fort Lincoln in September 1876. In 1879, a Court of Inquiry cleared him of any charges of dereliction of duty, although many people believed him to be guilty of cowardice, and his career suffered for it. In 1880, he was court-martialed for conduct unbecoming an officer, and dishonorably dismissed from the service. He died in 1889, after many attempts to be reinstated. In 1967, an Army Board of Review reexamined the Court Martial and reversed the dishonorable discharge to honorable. His remains, which had been interred in an unmarked grave in Washington, DC's Glenwood Cemetery, were re-interred into the Little Bighorn National Cemetery, to be with the men of the 7th Cavalry. (additional info by Russ Dodge) (bio by: Kit and Morgan Benson)
- Nichols, Ronald H. In Custer's Shadow: Major Marcus Reno. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2000. Print.
- Terrell, John U, and George H. Walton. Faint the Trumpet Sounds: The Life and Trial of Major Reno. New York: D. McKay Co, 1966. Internet resource.