sergeants kneel down and ask for quarter, and another secesh soldier came up and snapped his pistol at him twice; but they told him not to shoot him. I saw them shoot others when they were kneeling down.
W. J. Mays, sworn and examined: by the Chairman:
Q. To what company and regiment do you belong?
Answer. Company B, Thirteenth Tennessee cavalry.
Question. Were you in Fort Pillow
when it was attacked?
Answer. Yes, sir
Question. State what happened there?
Answer. They attacked us about six o'clock in the morning.
Sharp-shooting commenced early afterward, and kept coming closer and closer until the skirmishers were drawn in about ten o'clock. After that they made several efforts to gain the Fort
, and could not get the position.
Under this last flag of truce they gained the position they had been trying to get all day.
Question. Did you see them moving their troops when the flag of truce was in?
Answer. Yes, sir; I showed it to the boys.
Question. What was the movement?
Answer. The place was pretty well surrounded, but they were not on the ground they had been trying to get all day. Under that flag of truce they gained the place, some seventy-five yards from the Fort
, and placed themselves under logs, with a better position.
Question. Are you sure this movement was made while the flag of truce was in?
Answer. I know it.
Question. Did others see it?
Answer. Yes, sir; two boys near me, who were both taken prisoners.
Question. Was any thing said about it at the time?
Answer. We spoke of it among ourselves at the time.
We remarked that under the flag of truce they were only gaining the position they had been trying for all day. I was shot in the charge on the Fort
The place was then taken.
I would not have fallen then, but our men after surrendering found no quarter shown them, and they flew down the bluff, and ran over me and kept me down for some time, until I bled so that I could not get up. I saw them shoot a great many after they surrendered.
I saw them shoot four white men, and at least twenty-five blacks, some of them within twenty feet of me, while they were begging for quarter.
They pulled one out of a hollow log by the foot and held him, when another shot him close by me. There were two negro women, and three little boys, some eight, nine, or twelve years old, about twenty-five steps from me. The secesh ran upon them and cursed them, and said, “Damn them;” they thought they were free to shoot them.
All fell but one, a little fellow, and they took the breech of a gun and knocked him down.
Then they followed up the men that were trying to get away down the bluff, and some hours afterward they came back searching their pockets.
They came on back then, looking over them, and I saw one man with a canteen, and asked him for a drink of water.
His reply was to turn on me with his pistol presented, and shoot at me three times, saying: “God damn you; I will give you water.”
But he didn't hit me, though he threw the dirt over my face.
I concluded it was best to lie still, and didn't move any more until after dark, and then I crawled in with some of the dead and laid there until about nine o'clock the next morning, when the gunboat came up, and I crawled down on the gunboat with a piece of white paper in my left hand, and made signs, and the boat came ashore, and I got on the boat.
The general cry from the time they charged the Fort
until an hour afterward was: “Kill 'em, kill 'em; God damn 'em; that's Forrest's orders, not to leave one alive.”
They were burning the buildings.
They came with a chunk of fire to burn the building where I was in with the dead.
They looked in and said, “These damned sons of bitches are all dead,” and went off. I heard guns the next morning, but I was in there with the dead, and didn't see them shoot any body.
Question. Did you see any of the men in the Fort
shot after they had surrendered?
Answer. Yes, sir; I saw four white men and twenty-five negroes that I spoke of that were shot in the Fort
The white men didn't commence flying from the Fort
, though they threw their guns down, until they saw there was no quarter shown them.
James McCoy, sworn and examined: by the Chairman:
Question. Where do you reside?
Answer. When I am suffered to live at home, I live in Tennessee
Question. You don't belong to the army?
Answer. No, sir; but I have been with the regiment six months. The head officers
were old acquaintances of mine.
I once lived with Major Bradford
Question. Were you at Fort Pillow
at the time the attack was made?
Answer. Yes, sir; I was in Fort Pillow
Question. Will you tell us what you observed there?
Answer. About daylight in the morning part of the pickets came in, and said the rebels had captured some of the pickets and were coming.
I had not got out of bed then.
was up immediately the alarm was given.
I had had my hands mashed a few days before.
told me I had better go on the gunboat, as I would be in the way, because I could not hold a gun. I went on board the gunboat, and about sunrise the firing commenced.
The gunboat immediately played up and down the river, where I could see every thing going on at the Fort
I could not see over the bluff.
had a flag, and stood on the edge of the bluff, and motioned to the gunboats where