My Army Life and the Fort Phil Kearney Massacre


My Army Life and the Fort Phil Kearney Massacre

With an Account of the Celebration of "Wyoming Opened"

Frances C. Carrington
With an introduction by Shannon Smith Calitri

316 pages


May 2004


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October 2022


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About the Book

First published in 1910, Frances C. Carrington’s My Army Life and the Fort Phil Kearney Massacre recounted the author’s adventures as an army wife on the Great Plains, but also sought to set the record straight on her second husband’s involvement in the Fetterman fight.

Frances traveled with her first husband, Lt. George Washington Grummond, to Fort Phil Kearney in Wyoming in 1866 where he was killed in the Fetterman incident just a few months later. She eventually married the post commander, Col. Henry B. Carrington, after the death of his first wife, Margaret, who had befriended and cared for Frances during her brief, tragic episode at the frontier post.

Frances’s narrative recalls the wonder and worries of a naive young bride during the fateful days of 1866. From her voyage to Wyoming to her encounters with unfamiliar peoples and strange landscapes, Frances’s vivid prose examines not only the everyday workings of a frontier army post but also the political and social intrigue behind one of the most controversial military defeats in Western history.

Author Bio

Shannon Smith Calitri is a professor of history at Oglala Lakota College.


"[Carrington's] descriptions of Western army life are illuminating, earthy and remarkable with keen observations. . . . An intriguing and informative read."—Chuck Lewis, True West

"Carrington's book is a riveting portrait of life at a frontier post in dangerous territory, as well as a snapshot of Victorian mores and the lingering influence of the Civil War. . . . It is a necessary addition to other material on Fort Phil Kearny, the Fetterman Massacre, and the Bozeman Trail."—Roundup Magazine

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