In reference to the Fort Pillow “massacre.” Comments from http://studycivilwar.wordpress.com/2013/12/13/fort-pillow-and-nathan-bedford-forrest-part-3-whose-fault/#respond
So this particular massacre, and the involvement of race as the significant factor, is a product of a war caused by chattel slavery.
Yes, and as I said in the post the institution of slavery itself, and what it led people to do and to think, played a significant role.
In his own words Al Mackey declares the Fort Pillow battle a result of the institution of slavery. Ok, so that is his opinion and he is entitled to that no matter how far-fetched it is.
Now if the Hate not History guru will be so kind, perhaps he can give us his opinion on this incident in Louisiana committed by Union troops under Gen. Banks. I would love an answer, it is always interesting to see how a neo- yankee will try to spin history.
Official Report Relative to The Conduct of Federal Troops in Western Louisiana during the Invasion of 1863 and 1864.
Compiled from testimony under the direction of
Governor Henry W. Allen
Page 10 —
— Though we cannot reproduce his graphic description of what he witnessed in his own words, we take the liberty of giving enough of it, from memory to convey an idea of this licentious march. “The road,” said he, ‘”Was filled with an indiscriminate mass of armed men, on horseback and on foot, carts, wagons, cannon and caisson, rolling along in most tumultuous disorder, while to the right and to the left, joining the mass, and detaching from it, singly and in groups, were hundreds going empty-handed and returning laden Disregarding the lanes and pathways, they broke through fields and enclosures, spreading in every direction that promised plunder or attracted curiosity. Country carts, horses, mules and oxen, followed by Negro men, women, and even children, (who were pressed into service to carry the plunder,) laden with every conceivable object, were approaching and mingling in the mass from every side.
(Speaking of slaves) —– Of the tide of human beings we have described, two thousand perished in six weeks. Their shallow graves lie along the waters of the Ramos. Scooped out with careless indifference, and covered with indecent haste, they were only marked by swarms of fattened flies, living on the putrid matter oozing through the loose earth above them. They have found their freedom; such freedom as God vouchsafes to all the children of men.
Page 53 —
Many, following the army, were present, and crossed with it; and thus had an opportunity to witness the actual condition of the slaves, the moment they passed from the Federal hands.
Seven miles from the town Brashear, on the bank« of the Bayou Ramos, they found, have described, the graves of the dead; the condition of the living, as they found them, we will attempt to describe. Skirting the bayou, in a thicket of undergrowth and briars, were encamped, without shelter, a wretched, death-stricken crowd of human beings, who but a few short weeks before, had been driven from their homes full of the rigor of health, and overflowing with the exuberance of animal life, and now were dying in squalid filth, or living in abject misery. The adjacent thicket, filled with the decomposing bodies of those, who, dragging themselves thither, and falling from exhaustion, had, unable to return, died there; spread over the camps a nauseous stench, which threatened death to the survivors. Crouched to the earth, with their heads sunk between their knees, or lying with upturned faces, gazing vacantly in the air, the poor surviving negroes were moved by no sympathies for the sufferers around them. Sunk in despondency and despair, or oppressed by deadly stupor, they not only neglected the last duties to the dead, but they regarded with stupid indifference those who were falling into the jaws of death. Many were
Page 54—- It was afterwards remarked, that even hard men, who found their slaves on neighboring plantations, softened by so many exhibitions of destitution, suffering and death, met them with the feelings of a father, and welcomed the return of the prodigal son.
— Every eye turned instinctively to the sugar house, standing nearby, as if to penetrate its mysteries.
Dr. George Hill, a distinguished physician and surgeon of Opelousas, whose nerves had been fortified by an active professional practice for forty years, has, under the solemnity of an oath, furnished us with a statement of what he witnessed. We copy the essential portions of his communication: “In the summer of 1863, Berwick’s Bay and a portion of the Lafourche country were taken possession of by the Confederate army. I, with many others, who had lost their property by the raid which the Federal army had made, between the 20th of April and the 20th of May, of this year, visited the Bay for the purpose of recovering our property. I was among the first who crossed the Bay; and having been informed, on the night of my arrival, by a gentleman of the name of March, that I had lost several negroes at the sugar house of Dr. Saunders, and that others were there in a dying condition, in the morning, as soon as a horse could be obtained, I proceeded to the sugar house of Dr. S., and entered it by a door in the west end. The scene which then and there presented itself, can never be effaced from my memory. On the right hand side of the Purgery floor, from where I stood, lay three female corpses in a state of nudity, and also in a far advanced stage of decomposition. Many others were lying all over the floor; many speechless and in a dying condition. All appeared to have died of the same disease—bloody flux. The floor was slippery with blood, mucus and feces. The dying, and all those unable to help themselves, were lying with their scanty garments rolled around their heads and breasts— the lower part of the body
Page 54 — naked—and every time« an involuntary discharge of blood and feces, combined with air, would pass, making a slight noise, clouds of flies, such as I never saw before, would immediately rise and settle down again on all the exposed parts of the dying. * * In passing through the house, a cold chill shook my frame, from which I did not recover for several. months, and, indeed, it came near causing my life.
Page 55 —
As I passed from the house I met with a negro man of my own, who informed me that he had lost his wife and two children. 1 asked him if his friends, the Yankees, had not furnished him with medicine. He said “no, and if they had, I would not have given it to my family, as all who took their medicine died in twelve hours from the time of its being given” (Poisoned medicine being given to children!!!)
This deposition having been read to Dr. Saunders, the proprietor of the sugar house in question, and now a representative of St. Mary in the State Senate, ho declared, that while it was faithful in the general description, it did not exhibit all the horrors of the scone; as before the arrival of Dr. Hill, he had caused many decomposed bodies that filled the coolers to be removed and. interred. A hundred others would, if necessary, add their testimony to that of these gentlemen.
There were other places on the island where the poor wretches were bivouacked, all presenting the same scenes of squalid misery. On the representation of the gentlemen who witnessed them, the Confederate officer in charge of the posit, moved by a manly sympathy, immediately put in requisition his military transports, then pressingly needed for the military service, and had all the poor creatures removed, under proper medical superintendence, to a more salubrious place on the Teche, where they could receive proper attention, with pure water and wholesome food. Had not this been promptly done, it is the opinion of the medical men present, that every soul, amounting to many hundreds, would have perished.
One of your Commissioners found two children under ten years of age separated from their parents. He subsequently learned, that while the father had been taken for the army, the mother had been thrown upon a plantation below the city of New Orleans. He found a mother with two children, who had been separated from one, a little girl aged eleven ; and he subsequently learned that she was living with a free mulatto family opposite that city. He ascertained, beyond doubt, that all the aged, all the infants, and many of the smaller children taken from his plantation had perished.
JOHN E. KING,