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American Massacre chronicles the Fort Pillow Massacre...
American Massacre chronicles the Fort Pillow Massacre which occurred on April 12, 1864. Fort Pillow was an isolated Union fort in the backwaters of the Civil War on a bluff of the Mississippi River in west Tennessee manned by a force of about 600 black soldiers recently freed from slavery and white Tennessee Unionists. The battle remains a racially charged controversy to this day because of allegations that Confederate General Forrest ordered the massacre of black soldiers after they surrendered in order to terrorize blacks from enlisting in the Union army.
This book provides an exciting, fast-paced and suspenseful narrative of the Fort Pillow Massacre and the key events leading up to it including Forrest's raid into west Tennessee and Kentucky and first encounter with black troops in his attack on Paducah, Kentucky. Along the way it describes the struggle of African Americans for the right to serve in the Union Army while painting a vivid portrait of a divided region and its people in turmoil.
Additionally, the book contains a strong element of creative nonfiction including dramatic prosecution and defense arguments for a fictional military commission war crimes trial of Nathan Bedford Forrest. A lighting rod of controversy in America to this day, slave trader, brilliant cavalry commander and Ku Klux Klan leader Forrest stands forever on the high bluff of the Mississippi River as a symbol of heroism to some and racial strife to others