The Fort Pillow Massacre: North, South, and the Status of African Americans in the Civil War Era, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Fort Pillow Massacre

North, South, and the Status of African Americans in the Civil War Era, 1st Edition

By Bruce Tap


216 pages

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On April 12, 1864, a small Union force occupying Fort Pillow, Tennessee, a fortress located on the Mississippi River just north of Memphis, was overwhelmed by a larger Confederate force under the command of Nathan Bedford Forrest. While the battle was insignificant from a strategic standpoint, the indiscriminate massacre of Union soldiers, particularly African-American soldiers, made the Fort Pillow Massacre one of the most gruesome slaughters of the American Civil War, rivaling other instances of Civil War brutality.

The Fort Pillow Massacre outlines the events of the massacre while placing them within the racial and social context of the Civil War. Bruce Tap combines a succinct history with a selection of primary documents, including government reports, eyewitness testimony, and newspaper articles, to introduce the topic to undergraduates.


"This book gives a stunning account of the incident at Fort Pillow with the vast amount of the information coming from the Committee on the Conduct of the War." - The Lone Star Book Review

Table of Contents

Introduction. 1. Means to an End 2. No Quarter 3. Controversy 4. Historians and the Fort Pillow Massacre Conclusion. Documents.

About the Author

Bruce Tap is an independent scholar and the author of Over Lincoln's Shoulder: The Committee on the Conduct of War.

About the Series

Critical Moments in American History

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General
HISTORY / Military / United States
HISTORY / United States / 19th Century
HISTORY / United States / Civil War Period (1850-1877)
HISTORY / United States / State & Local / South (AL, AR, FL, GA, KY, LA, MS, NC, SC, TN, VA, WV)