previous next
[48]

Question. How long did you stay there?

Answer. I went about two o'clock in the evening, and staid till night.

Question. Did you go about the Fort after you went back?

Answer. Yes, sir; I went up in it, expecting to find my son lying there, and I went around, where I saw some half buried, some with feet out, or hands out, or heads out; but I could not find him. I was so distressed that I could not tell much about it.

Question. Did you see any body nailed to any boards there?

Answer. We saw a man lying there, burned they said; but I did not go close to him. I was looking all around the Fort for my child, and did not pay attention to any thing else.

Question. You came away that night?

Answer. I think we did.

Question. Is that all you know about it?

Answer. That is about all I know about it. There was a pile of dirt there, and there was a crack in it, which looked like a wounded man had been buried there, and had tried to get out, and had jammed the dirt, for they buried the wounded and the dead altogether there. There were others knew about that.

Mrs. Rebecca Williams, sworn and examined: by Mr. Gooch:

Question. Where do you reside?

Answer. In Obion County, Tennessee.

Question. Was your husband in that fight at Fort Pillow?

Answer. Yes, sir.

Question. Were you there during the fight?

Answer. I was over on the Island with Mrs. Johnson.

Question. Did you go back to Fort Pillow after the battle?

Answer. Yes, sir.

Question. What did you see there?

Answer. I did not see any thing more than what Mrs. Johnson saw. I saw a burned man. He was lying right where a house was burned. He was a white man, but as I was alone by myself, I felt frightened, and did not look at it. I saw many buried there, some half buried, and negroes lying around there unburied. I heard that there was a man nailed up to a building and burned, but I did not see it.

Question. What time of day was it that you were there?

Answer. About two o'clock, the day after the fight. I saw that the man who was burned was a white man. Mrs. Ruffin was there and examined it, and can tell you all about it.

Captain James H. Odlin sworn and examined: by the Chairman:

Question. What is your rank and position in the service?

Answer. I am a Captain, and Assistant Adjutant-General and Chief of Staff for General Brayman, for the district of Cairo, where I have been stationed since the twenty-third of January, 1864.

Question. Do you know any thing about the capture of Fort Pillow?

Answer. Only from hearsay.

Question. You are acquainted somewhat with the circumstances attending the surrender of Union City?

Answer. Yes, sir.

Question. Will you tell us about that?

Answer. About four o'clock on the evening of the twenty-third of March we received a telegram that it was likely Union City would be attacked within two days. Shortly afterward we received a telegram from Colonel Hawkins that he would be attacked within twenty-four hours. He said his men had not seen the enemy, but that his information was reliable. General Brayman instructed me to proceed by special boat to Columbus, and from thence, by special train, to Union City, to inquire into the matter, to find out the truth of the case, and let him know; also to find out whether reenforcements were necessary. I left Cairo about five P. M. on the twenty-third, arrived at Columbus about half-past 7 o'clock, and immediately proceeded to the telegraph-office and telegraphed to Colonel Hawkins, asking him if he had any further information. He answered that he had none. I then asked him if his information and his despatches could be relied upon, and whether he had seen the enemy. He answered that none of his men had seen the enemy; that he had not seen any one who had seen the enemy, but that his information was entirely reliable, and that he would be attacked, there was was no doubt of it.

I then proceeded, by special train, to Union City, and had a consultation with Colonel Hawkins. He told me that the ferries on the Obion had been destroyed, and that scouts whom he had expected in the day before had not returned; that he supposed that they were captured, or that it was impossible for them. to get across the Obion. He said that his men had not seen the enemy; that he could not get any of them across the Obion in consequence of the rebel forces having destroyed the private ferries, and guarding the other places.

About half-past 3 o'clock on the morning of the twenty-fourth, a messenger came in and stated that the pickets at the bridge on the Dresden and Hickman road had been attacked and driven in, and that they were probably cut off, which afterward proved to be the fact. The messenger also reported that, when shots were exchanged, he thought the rebels had brought artillery to the front, but he could not be certain of that; that it sounded on the bridge like artillery. I immediately directed Colonel Hawkins to have his men saddle their horses ready for a fight. I instructed him, if he saw fit, and thought he could not hold the place, to abandon it and fall back on Columbus. He asked me how soon I would reenforce him if he remained there. I told him I would reenforce him just as quick as I could get the troops up there. He said he thought he could hold the place with his regiment if he had some artillery; but that he could

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: