On 15 April 1864, Nathan Bedford Forrest wrote a memo boasting about the Fort Pillow Massacre three days earlier:
The river was dyed with the blood of the slaughtered for two hundred yards. The approximate loss was upward of five hundred killed, but few of the officers escaping. My loss was about twenty killed. It is hoped that these facts will demonstrate to the Northern people that negro soldiers cannot cope with Southerners.