Custer Post #5
Grand Rapids, Kent County, Michigan
Organized September 27, 1878
Mustered as Post 6, this Post was renumbered to Number 5 as part of the reorganization of the Department of Michigan. The Parker Post 5, of Petersburg, was dropped in the reorganization in 1879. The Post was probably named to honor General George Armstrong Custer. The first quarter report of 1879 indicates Post 6, all following are identified as Post 5.
In his letter to C. V. R. Pond, Provisional Department Commander, reporting the muster of this Post, J. H. Johnson, of Montague, indicates:
“Gen. Innes turned over to me to forward to Head Quarters the Property of old Post Judd which I will do after Bigelow has looked over the old Rituals.”
Cravath’s 1869 book lists a Post 49 in Grand Rapids, with W. P. Innes as Commander, but does not indicate a name for this Post. The above reference seems to indicate that the name was “Judd”. There was no other Post in either 1868 or 1869 listed as being in Grand Rapids. If this is the case, the Post may have been named in honor of Samuel A. Judd of Grand Rapids. He was a Captain in the 3rd Michigan Infantry enlisting on May 3, 1861. He was killed in action at Fair Oaks, Va., May 31, 1862.
The Post met at a variety of locations in downtown Grand Rapids. It appears that they finally settled at the Armory on Michigan Street in 1927 and continued to meet there until the Post disbanded.
The first Post commander was Andrew T. McReynolds, Col., Lincoln Cavalry (1st New York Cavalry).
The last Post Commander was Eugene Owen who served as a Private in Company I, 177th Ohio Infantry.
The Post was disbanded March 12, 1945.