First Lieutenant, Company E, 7th US Cavalry, during the 1876 Battle of the Little Big Horn. Assigned to Reno's Battalion, he survived the battle.
Born to Aquila di Rudio in Belluno, Venetia Province, Austria, he worked as a dockyard worker in Wapping, England. He married Eliza Booth (born Feb 1840, Nottingham, England) on 9 Dec 1855 at Parish Church, Godalming, Surrey, England. With Felice Orsini, he attempted the assassination of French Emperor Napoleon III in Paris on 14 Jan 1858. Captured and sentenced to death, he was sent to Devil's Island, French Guiana, where he escaped in late 1858 and returned to England. He then emigrated to the US in 1864, and enlisted 25 Aug 1864 in Company A, 79th NY Infantry. He was appointed 2nd Lt, Company D, 2nd US Colored Infantry on 11 Nov 1864, and mustered out of service on 5 Jan 1866, in Key West, Florida. Missing the military service life, he was appointed 2nd Lt, 2nd Infantry, 31 Aug 1867, and reassigned to 7th Cavalry, on 14 July 1869. He was in the 1873 Yellowstone Expedition, and was promoted to 1st Lt on 15 Dec 1875.
During the Battle of the Little Big Horn, he was assigned to Reno's Battalion, and was missing in the retreat from the valley floor. Originally, he hid among the rushes along the river, and rejoined his battalion that night, continuing the fight. He was appointed Captain on 17 Dec 1882, at Fort Meade, Dakota Territory. Later he served at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, and at Fort Bayard, New Mexico. He retired on 26 Aug 1909 in the rank of Major, in San Diego, Calif. In 1898, he had moved to Los Angeles, where he died of bronchial catarrh and acute enteritis. His remains were cremated and buried in San Francisco National Cemetery. He had 3 daughters and a son. (Bio by Kit and Morgan Benson)
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