OHIO INF./BATTLE OF FORT PILLOW/NEGROES BUTCHERED/FORREST.

ALS, 10pp., 8vo., on picket near Memphis, Tenn. 4/14/64 to girlfriend.

Soldier (Maitland) writes about Fort Pillow (75 miles from Memphis), has fallen to Rebels, Forrest with a force of 4-5000 attacked it (4/12/64), Union force “nearly all negroes” consisted of 600-700 men, nearly 1.2 killed during fight, Col. Comdg. (Wm. Bradford) captured, remainder also captured, Rebels “have a particular dislike for negro soldiers, they fell to & butchered them in cold blood after taking possession of the fort,” One of Union transports (Golden Age) sunk, boxes of provisions & mail missing & presumed captured incl. mail from female recipient of his letters, force to be sent out with gunboats to break blockade & repossess fort, expects next raid by Forrest to be on Memphis, Col. McMillen told Genl. Buckland that he could recapture fort but writer does not think that would be feasible, describes dinner (cold beef, dry break, hot coffee), southern (Tenn.) ladies try to pass the lines but could not w/o pass from Genl. Buckland, writer said they were expecting Forrest & had rations prepared for him, ladies said they did not know him but did some of his men, thought their good looks would pass them thru but “no go”, returned to camp to learn Ft. Pillow evacuated by Rebels, boats can pass unmolested, troop reinforcements in area & Forrest would get “warm welcome” if he returned, boxes (damaged) arrived, speech by Col. McMillen, had picture taken, will send one etc. Great battle action, ltr. from one of war’s most notorious incidents. First Fort Pillow battle letter we have had in all out years (25 +) of dealing. XF. $1150.00.

BMG Civil War – bmgcivilwar.com/

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