Book Discussion on River Run Red: The Fort Pillow Massacre

Andrew Ward talked about his book River Run Red: The Fort Pillow Massacre in the American Civil War, published by Viking. The book… read more

Andrew Ward talked about his book River Run Red: The Fort Pillow Massacre in the American Civil War, published by Viking. The book detailed the capture of the Union garrison at Fort Pillow, Tenn., by Nathan Bedford Forrest’s Confederate cavalry on April 12, 1864. The author discussed the bigotry and rage that was displayed during the battle, as well as the role of the Confederate general and future reputed founder of the Ku Klux Klan. The attack on the outnumbered garrison, containing an artillery regiment of 300 freed slaves and a cavalry regiment of 350 white Tennessee Unionists, left approximately two-thirds of the garrison dead or taken prisoner. The author concluded that the often-disputed term of “massacre” is the correct designation for the incident. He detailed the evidence that many were killed while surrendering or wounded, and that the Confederate soldiers slaughtered fleeing African-American civilians as well. A congressional investigation resulted, but General Forrest was cleared of any violations, returned to civilian life, and went on to become the first grand wizard of the KKK. Following his presentation, Mr. Ward responded to questions and comments from members of the audience. close

*The transcript for this program was compiled from uncorrected Closed Captioning.

More information about

Book Discussion on River Run Red: The Fort Pillow Massacre

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Program ID:
189407-1
Category:
Public Affairs Event
Format:
Speech
Location:
Nashville, Tennessee, United States
First Aired:
Jan 15, 2006
Last Aired:
Oct 13, 2013

Airing Details

  • Jan 15, 2006 | 2:00am EST | C-SPAN 2
  • Oct 12, 2013 | 4:42pm EDT | C-SPAN 2
  • Oct 13, 2013 | 1:07am EDT | C-SPAN 2
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