Acting under orders from Colonel Carrington, Brevet-Colonel William Judd Fetterman led eighty men out of the gates of Fort Phil Kearny at 11:15 a.m. of that dark December day. Carrington's orders were explicit: relieve the wood train from Indian attack, but do not pursue the enemy beyond Lodge Trail Ridge.
At 12:45, after hearing gunfire, a second company was sent out to investigate and found Fetterman and all of his men dead.
This book talks about the many questions developed from this days events. The most important question; why would Fetterman defy his direct orders and pursue the enemy?