I was carried that night to a sort of little shanty that the rebels had occupied during the with their sharp-shooters.
I received no medical attention that night at all. The next morning early I heard the report of cannon down the river.
It was the gunboat 28 coming up from Memphis
; she was shelling the rebels along the shore as she came up. The rebels immediately ordered the burning of all the buildings, and ordered the two buildings where the wounded were to be fired.
Some one called to the officer who gave the order and said there were wounded in them.
The building I was in began to catch fire.
I prevailed upon one of our soldiers who had not been hurt much to draw me out, and I think others got the rest out. They drew us down a little way, in a sort of gully, and we lay there in the hot sun without water or any thing.
About this time a squad of rebels came around, it would seem for the purpose of murdering what negroes they could find.
They began to shoot the wounded negroes all around there, interspersed with the whites.
I was lying a little way from a wounded negro, when a secesh soldier came up to him and said: “What in hell are you doing here?”
The colored soldier said he wanted to get on the gunboat.
The secesh soldier said, “You want to fight us again, do you?
Damn you, I'll teach you,” and drew up his gun and shot him dead.
Another negro was standing up erect a little way from me; he did not seem to be hurt much.
The rebel loaded his gun again immediately.
The negro begged of him not to shoot him, but he drew up his gun and took deliberate aim at his head.
The gun snapped, but he fixed it again, and then killed him. L<*> saw this.
I heard them shooting all around there — I suppose killing them.
By the Chairman
Question. Do you know of any rebel officers going on board our gunboat after she came up?
Answer. I don't know about the gunboat, but I saw some of them on board the Platte Valley
, after I had been carried on her. They came on board, and I think went in to drink with some of our officers.
I think one of the rebel officers was General Chalmers
Question. Do you know what officers of ours drank with them?
Answer. I do not.
Question. You know that they did go on board the Platte Valley
and drink with some of our officers?
Answer. I did not see them drinking at the time, but I have no doubt they did; that was my impression from all I saw, and I thought our officers might have been in better business.
Question. Were our officers treating these rebel officers with attention?
Answer. They seemed to be; I did not see much of it, as they passed along by me.
Question. Do you know whether or not the conduct of the privates, in murdering our soldiers after they had surrendered, seemed to have the approval of their officers?
Answer. I did not see much of their officers, especially during the worst of those outrages; they seemed to be back.
Question. Did you observe any effort on the part of their officers to suppress the murders?
Answer. No, sir; I did not see any where I was first carried; just about dusk, all at once several shots were fired just outside.
The cry was: “They are shooting the darkey soldiers.”
I heard an officer ride up and say: “Stop that firing; arrest that man.”
I suppose it was a rebel officer, but I do not know.
It was reported to me, at the time, that several darkeys were shot then.
An officer who stood by me, a prisoner, said that they had been shooting them, but that the General
had had it stopped.
Question. Do you know of any of our men in the hospital being murdered?
Answer. I do not.
Question. Do you know any thing of the fate of your Quartermaster, Lieutenant Akerstrom
Answer. He was one of the officers who went with me to meet the flag of truce the last time.
I do not know what became of him; that was about the last I saw of him. I heard that he was nailed to a board and burned, and I have very good reason for believing that was the case, although I did not see it. The First Lieutenant
of company D of my regiment says that he has an affidavit to that effect of a man who saw it.
Question. Have you any knowledge in relation to any of our men being buried alive?
Answer. I have not, other than I have stated.
By Mr. Gooch
Question. How long had your regiment been in Fort Pillow
Answer. We reached there the eighth of February.
There were no other troops there then, and we held the place alone for some time.
By the Chairman
Question. By whom were you ordered there?
Answer. By General W. S. Smith
, Chief of Cavalry
, and also by General Hurlbut
Question. What other troops were there at the time of the fight?
Answer. Four companies of the Sixth United States heavy artillery, (colored,) and a battery called now, I think, the Second United States light artillery.
It was before the First Tennessee light artillery, colored.
Question. What was about the number of our force there?
Answer. Not far from five hundred men.
Question. Do you know what became of Major Bradford
Answer. He escaped unhurt, as far as the battle was concerned.
I was told the next morning on the boat that he had been paroled.
I did not see him after that night.
Question. Do you know why you were left unsupported, as you were, when it was known that Forrest
was in your vicinity?