War of the Rebellion: Serial 057 Page 0556 KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., ALA., AND N. GA. Chapter XLIV.

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Numbers 10. Report of Lieutenant Colonel Thomas H. Harris, Assistant Adjutant-General, U. S. Army, of the garrison at Fort Pillow, etc.*


Memphis, Tenn., April 26, 1864.

SIR: I wish to state one section of Company D, Second U. S. Light Artillery (colored), 1 commissioned officer and 40 men, were sent to Fort Pillow about February 15, as part of the garrison.

The garrison at Fort Pillow, by last reports received, consisted of the First Battalion, Sixty U. S. Heavy Artillery (colored), 8 commissioned officers and 213 enlisted men; one section Company D, Second U. S. Light Artillery (colored), 1 commissioned officer and 40 men; First Battalion, Thirteenth Tennessee Cavalry, Major W. F. Bradford, 10 commissioned officers and 285 enlisted men. Total white troops, 295; total colored troops, 262; grand total, 557. Six field pieces-two 6-pounders, two 12-pounder howitzers, and two 10-pounder Parrotts.


Lieutenant-Colonel and Assistant Adjutant-General.



Memphis, Tenn., March 28, 1864.

Major L. F. BOOTH,

Commanding First Battalion, First Alabama Siege Artillery:

SIR: You will proceed with your own battalion to Fort Pillow and establish your force in garrison of the works there. As you will be, if I am correct in my memory, the senior officer at that post, you will take command, conferring, however, freely and fully with Major Bradford, Thirteenth Tennessee Cavalry, whom you will find a good officer, though not of much experience.

There are two points of land fortified at Fort Pillow, one of which only is now held by our troops. You will occupy both, either with your own troops alone or holding one with yours and giving the other in charge to Major Bradford. The positions are commanding, and can be held by a small force against almost any odds.

I shall send you at this time two 12-pounder howitzers, as I hope it will not be necessary to mount heavy guns. You will, however, immediately examine the ground and the works, and if, in your opinion, 20-pounder Parrotts can be advantageously used, I will order them to you. My own opinion is that there is not range enough. Major Bradford is well acquainted with the country, and should keep scouts well out, and forward all information received direct to me.

I think Forrest's check at Paducah will not dispose him to try the river again, but that he will fall back to Jackson and thence cross the Tennessee; as soon as this is ascertained I shall withdraw your garrison. Nevertheless, act promptly in putting the works into perfect order and the post into its strongest defense. Allow as little intercourse as possible with the country, and cause all supplies which


*Copies of this report and the following papers, marked as inclosures Nos. 1, 2, and 3, were forwarded to the War Department by Lieutenant-Colonel Harris.