Sergeant Lyman Kidder
Fifth Iowa Volunteer Cavalry
Lyman Stockwell Kidder enlisted in the cavalry as a Fourth Corporal at Fort Snelling, Minnesota. Mustered on November 1, 1861, he would rise to the rank of Fifth Sergeant in Company K of the Fifth Iowa Cavalry.
On May 27, 1863, Kidder was discharged from the regiment to allow for his commissioning as First Lieutenant in the First Minnesota Cavalry. He mustered out of the regiment in November of 1863, and continued his exploits as First Sergeant of Company E of of Hatch's Minnesota Cavalry, being discharged in May of 1866.
The military was obviously in Kidder's blood, and in June of 1867 he received a commission as a Second Lieutenant in the Second United States Cavalry. He would serve ably on the frontier, but would eventually perish in an engagement with hostiles. On June 29, he and eleven troopers left Fort Sedgwick in Colorado with dispatches Colonel George Custer, commanding the Seventh US Cavalry.
The mutilated bodies of Kidder and his men were found on the twelfth of July. Buried at the scene by Custer's troops, Kidder's body was later exhumed for reburial in Saint Paul, Minnesota. The rest of the men were reburied at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.
For a fine photograph exposition of the Kidder Massacre, visit the Brackett's Battalion website.