Of the 161 burials in the Fort Buford cemetery, only a handful were directly related to combat. Soldiers as well as military dependents, civilians, Indian scouts employed by the army, and Indians visiting or living near the fort were buried here.
The majority of deaths were from illness, many of which went unidentified. Among the identifiable fatal diseases were heart disease, consumption (tuberculosis), typhoid fever, pneumonia, Bright's disease (a disease of the kidneys), acute gastritis, mumps, and dropsy (edema). Death at the post also occurred from accidental shootings, suicide, poisoning, murder, drowning. and "general debility." Deaths were even caused by lightning when, in 1880, two Indian women and a baby were struck; one of the women and the baby died instantly. Both were buried in the post cemetery.
Records indicate that only eight of the original burials remain. In 1896 the military burials are moved to Little Bighorn Battlefield National Cemetery. May Hazen, the daughter of the Post Commander Colonel William B. Hazen, was disinterred slightly more than a year after her 1872 death and burial in the post cemetery. May's remains were sent to "the States" for reburial. This was not uncommon for officer's families.