Although; better known for his indian fighting and the years after the civil war. Custer had accredited himself with an adequate record as a cavalry leader during the latter part of the civil war. He was born in new rumley, ohio on december 5th 1839. His early life was unremarkable and, custer spent much of his boyhood living with his half-sister and his brother-in-law in monroe, michigan. Before entering the united states military academy, custer attended the mcneely normal school, later known as hopedale normal college, in hopedale, ohio, and known as the first co-educational college for teachers in eastern ohio. While attending hopedale, custer, together with classmate william enos emery, was known to have carried coal to help pay for their room and board. Custer graduated from mcneely normal school in 1856 and taught school in ohio. He was able to gain a place at west point. Graduating in 1861due to the wars opening custer was to be at the very bottom of his class, custer was appointed to the newly formed union cavalry. His assignments during the war, were as follows; staff officer, at the first battle of bull run, for major general george b. Mcclellan in the army of the potomac’s 1862 peninsula campaign. First lieutenant 5th cavalry(june 23rd 31st march 1863) early in the gettysburg campaign, custer’s association with cavalry commander major general alfred pleasonton earned him promotion from first lieutenant to brigadier general of united states volunteers at the age of 23 (june 29th 1863). Commanding 2nd brigade, 3rd division, cavalry corps, army of the potomac (28th june 15th july & 4th august 20th december 1863). Commanding 1st brigade, 1st division, cavalry corps, army of the potomac (25th march 6th august 1864); service with the army of the shenandoah, 26th september 30th september 1864). Commanding 3rd division, cavalry corps, army of the shenandoah. (30th september – 30th march 1865). His last civil war rank would be that of major general, united states volunteers (15th april 1865). Custer was to remain in the army after the civil war and, eventually obtaining the rank of lieutenant colonel of the 7th u.S. Cavalry. Custer was famously defeated at the battle of little big horn. He was to die in that engagement along with his command, at the hands of the lakota sioux. After his demise it was discovered that he had contracted syphilis which was borne out with the infection of his wife elizabeth clift bacon (18421933).