The Billings Outpost

Williams plays Custer

HARDIN — A familiar face will lead the U.S. 7th Cavalry into battle at this year’s Custer’s Last Stand reenactments at Little Big Horn Days in Hardin (June 19-23). For the seventh straight year, veteran reenactor Rick Williams will portray Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer.

Williams began his reenacting career as a dismounted private in Company B, 1st Kentucky Cavalry, reenacting Civil War battles. He eventually volunteered for mounted duty and instantly fell in love with mounted combat, riding at every opportunity.

He first appeared as General Custer at Cridersville, Ohio, in July 2003. “For several years I had reenactors approach me and tell me how much I looked like Custer,” said Williams. “It finally got to the point where I couldn’t ignore it.” Today, he portrays Custer regularly, speaking at Civil War Round Tables, historical interest groups, school programs, reenactments and many other functions.

Much of his focus has been on Custer’s lesser-known Civil War record, but he embraces the role that made Custer a household name. In addition to portraying Custer at Little Bighorn Days, he also appears twice yearly in Custer’s birthplace of New Rumley, Ohio, where he is also a member of the Custer Memorial Association.

Williams’ movie credits include “Gods and Generals” and “Reel Injun.” He has also appeared in numerous short films and documentaries on the History Channel, National Geographic Channel, the Outdoor Channel and Our Ohio. Williams is the author of “The Beginner’s Guide to Civil War Reenacting.”

His research on famous killer Clyde Barrow was published in the United States and Great Britain in November 2003.

He is the father of four and has nine grandchildren.

Copyright 2012 Wild Raspberry Inc.

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