This is the biography of a professional soldier who led the Confederate defense of Port Hudson, Louisiana during the epic siege from May 21 to July 9, 1863. The day was worse for Union troops, who suffered 223 killed, 394 wounded and 1,623 missing. "They don't have to worry about further protests, further potential vandalism of the monuments," Van Turner, president of Memphis Greenspace and Shelby County Commissioner, said. T he Ku Klux Klan (KKK) was formed in 1865, shortly after the end of the American Civil War, but it didn’t prosper until 1867 when it came under the leadership of Nathan Bedford Forrest, former Confederate cavalry commander. A Union infantryman on the ground beside Forrest fired a musket ball at him with a point-blank shot, nearly knocking him out of the saddle. [26][40], Public debate surrounded Tennessee's decision to join the Confederacy and both the Confederate and Union armies recruited soldiers from the state. The school unveiled its latest mascot, a winged horse called "Lightning" inspired by the mythological Pegasus, during halftime of a basketball game against rival Tennessee State University on January 17, 1998. [9][10] Forrest was the first son of Mariam (Beck) and William Forrest. This equestrian statue of Confederate general Nathan Bedford Forrest was erected in May 1905. [73][74][75], Fort Pillow, located 40 miles (64 km) upriver from Memphis (near Henning, Tennessee), was originally constructed by Confederate general Gideon Johnson Pillow on the bluffs of the Mississippi River, and taken over by Union forces in 1862 after the Confederates had abandoned the fort. Sons of Confederate Veterans had fought the city's efforts to remove the statues. Nathan Bedford Forrest was born in Chapel Hill, Tennessee, on July 13, 1821. As a result, Grant was forced to revise and delay the strategy of his Vicksburg campaign. The tactics that he used while battling made him a renowned cavalry fighter during … — The remains of General Nathan Bedford Forrest and his wife are set to be removed from Health Sciences Park in the next couple of weeks. A bust sculpted by Jane Baxendale is on display at the Tennessee State Capitol building in Nashville. Shelby Foote is famously quoted as saying that the Civil War produced two geniuses, Abraham Lincoln, and Nathan Bedford Forrest. Upon seeing how badly equipped the CSA was, Forrest offered to buy horses and equipment with his own money for a regiment of Tennessee volunteer soldiers. The graves of Forrest and his wife were disinterred from Elmwood Cemetery, where Forrest requested to be buried, and placed beneath the statue. [10], In 1841 Forrest went into business with his uncle Jonathan Forrest in Hernando, Mississippi. Nathan Bedford Forrest was born to William and Miriam Beck Forrest in Bedford County, Tennessee in 1821. Horse Shot from Under several Shot by Lt. Andrew Willis Gould (14-Jun-1863) Surrendered to Enemy 9-May-1865 Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard (first) Slaveowners Risk Factors: Diabetes. [228] Foote also made Forrest a major character in his novel Shiloh, which used numerous first-person stories to illustrate a detailed timeline and account of the battle.[229][230]. The Nathan Bedford Forrest Monument is a bronze sculpture by Charles Henry Niehaus, depicting a mounted General Nathan Bedford Forrest wearing a uniform of the Confederate States Army. Local lawyer and radio host Rose Sanders said, "Glorifying Nathan B. Forrest here is like glorifying a Nazi in Germany. Due to the pandemic shutdown of the court system, things have been delayed. Amid the aristocratic ranks of the Confederate cavalry, Nathan Bedford Forrest was untutored, all but unlettered, and regarded as no more than a guerrilla. [183] In 1904, the remains of Forrest and his wife Mary were disinterred from Elmwood and moved to a Memphis city park that was originally named Forrest Park in his honor, but has since been renamed Health Sciences Park.[184]. One of the wounded Matlock men survived and served under Forrest during the Civil War. Colonel Stephen G. Hicks: "if I have to storm your works, you may expect no quarter." [30][50], By early summer, Forrest commanded a new brigade of inexperienced cavalry regiments. Words cannot describe the scene. Forrest's body currently rests in Health Sciences Park which was previously known as Forrest Park in honor of … MEMPHIS, TN (WREG) — The remains of General Nathan Bedford Forrest and his wife are set to be removed from Health Sciences Park in the next couple of weeks. [76], On April 12, 1864, Forrest's men, under Brig. [13] William Forrest worked as a blacksmith in Tennessee until 1834, when he moved to Mississippi. [54][55], Forrest returned to his base in Mississippi with more men than he had started with. [56][57], The Union Army gained military control of Tennessee in 1862 and occupied it for the duration of the war, having taken control of strategic cities and railroads. Similar accounts were reported in many Southern newspapers at the time. State lawmakers are punishing the city for it. High schools named for Forrest were built in Chapel Hill, Tennessee and Jacksonville, Florida. [28] Although he was not formally educated, Forrest was able to read and write in clear and grammatical English. Ku Klux Klan leader Nathan Bedford Forrest remains being removed from Health Sciences Park The remains of Ku Klux Klan leader and Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest and his wife will be removed from Health Sciences Park in West Tennessee in the coming months. He did not specify where they would be moved. "[67][68] The story that Forrest confronted and threatened the life of Bragg in the fall of 1863, following the battle of Chickamauga, and that Bragg transferred Forrest to command in Mississippi as a direct result, is now considered to be apocryphal. [187], Forrest was elevated in Memphis in particular—where he lived and died—to the status of folk hero. Now often recast as "Getting there firstest with the mostest",[215] this misquote first appeared in a New York Tribune article written to provide colorful comments in reaction to European interest in Civil War generals. [78][79][80] According to historians John Cimprich and Bruce Tap, although their numbers were roughly equal, two thirds of the black Union soldiers were killed, while only a third of the whites were killed. "As an American, as a defender of the Constitution, it is their right to do so, to freely express their views," said Turner. But the Tennessee Historical Commission denied the city's request. [177][178] The Macon Weekly Telegraph newspaper also condemned Forrest for his speech, describing the event as "the recent disgusting exhibition of himself at the negro jamboree" and quoting part of a Charlotte Observer article, which read "We have infinitely more respect for Longstreet, who fraternizes with negro men on public occasions, with the pay for the treason to his race in his pocket, than with Forrest and [General] Pillow, who equalize with the negro women, with only 'futures' in payment". In the hasty retreat, they stripped off commemorative badges that read "Remember Fort Pillow" to avoid goading the Confederate force pursuing them.[107]. A surgeon removed the musket ball a week later, without anesthesia, which was unavailable. [77] What happened next became known as the Fort Pillow Massacre. Nathan Bedford Forrest (July 13, 1821 – October 29, 1877) was a prominent Confederate Army general during the American Civil War and the first Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan from 1867 to 1869. The members are sworn to recognize the government of the United States ... Its objects originally were protection against Loyal Leagues and the Grand Army of the Republic ...". Nathan Bedford Forrest was born on July 13th, in 1821. [111] During Hood's Tennessee Campaign, he fought alongside General John Bell Hood, the newest commander of the Confederate Army of Tennessee, in the Second Battle of Franklin on November 30. [27] He was known as a tireless rider in the saddle and a skilled swordsman. Gen. Samuel D. Sturgis at the Battle of Brices Crossroads in northeastern Mississippi. [171] George Cantor, a biographer of Confederate generals, wrote, "Forrest ducked and weaved, denying all knowledge, but admitted he knew some of the people involved. In July, he led them into Middle Tennessee under orders to launch a cavalry raid, and on July 13, 1862, led them into the First Battle of Murfreesboro, as a result of which all of the Union units surrendered to Forrest, and the Confederates destroyed much of the Union's supplies and railroad track in the area. [43], Forrest won praise for his performance under fire during an early victory in the Battle of Sacramento in Kentucky, the first in which he commanded troops in the field, where he routed a Union force by personally leading a cavalry charge that was later commended by his commander, Brigadier General Charles Clark. [165] The party advocated termination of the Freedman's Bureau and any government policy designed to aid blacks in the South. Forrest continued to lead his men in small-scale operations, including the Battle of Dover and the Battle of Brentwood until April 1863. Many in the north, including President Grant, backed the passage of the Fifteenth Amendment, that gave voting rights to Americans regardless of "race, color, or previous condition of servitude". Nathan Bedford Forrest often stated that he was “a horse ahead ... After the war, Forrest set up housekeeping with his wife, Mary Ann, near Memphis. [10] His father William was of English descent, and most of his biographers state that his mother Mariam was of Scotch-Irish descent, but the Memphis Genealogical Society says that she was of English descent. "[182], Forrest was buried at Elmwood Cemetery in Memphis. He had exhausted his fortune during the war, and with the abolition of slavery he lost one of his most valuable avenues for making money. MEMPHIS, TN (WREG) — The remains of General Nathan Bedford Forrest and his wife are set to be removed from Health Sciences Park in the next couple of weeks. Forrest is often erroneously quoted as saying his strategy was to "git thar fustest with the mostest". [196][197] A monument to Forrest at a corner of Veterans Plaza in Rome, Georgia was erected by the United Daughters of the Confederacy in 1909 to honor his bravery for saving Rome from Union Army Colonel Abel Streight and his cavalry.[198]. Forrest's grandson, Nathan Bedford Forrest II (1872–1931), became commander-in-chief of the Sons of Confederate Veterans[34] and a Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan in Georgia and secretary of the national organization. Their unusual abilities as fighters, thinkers, and leaders made for a team of men who formed a unique brotherhood that lasted long after the war. Later on, when Forrest was only 17 years old, his father and his twin sister passed away. [97], Because of the events at Fort Pillow, the Northern public and press viewed Forrest as a war criminal. "[142] Forrest was the Klan's first and only Grand Wizard, and he was active in recruitment for the Klan from 1867 to 1868. [108] Concerned about Union supply lines, Maj. Gen. Sherman sent a force under the command of Maj. Gen. Andrew J. Smith to deal with Forrest. [136] The organization had grown to the point where an experienced commander was needed, and Forrest was well-suited to the role. The group was a loose collection of local factions throughout the former Confederacy that used violence and the threat of violence to maintain white control over the newly enfranchised former slaves. Nathan Bedford Forrest was born to a poor family in Chapel Hill, Tennessee. [168] The Klan's violent tactics backfired, as Grant, whose slogan was "Let us have peace", won the election and Republicans gained a majority in Congress. CNN's Kaylene Chassie, Nicole Chavez and Doug Criss contributed to this report. [166], Forrest testified before the Congressional investigation of Klan activities on June 27, 1871. He acquired several cotton plantations in the Delta region of West Tennessee,[10] and became a slave trader at a time when demand for slaves was booming in the Deep South; his slave trading business was based on Adams Street in Memphis. Military service: Confederate Army Confederate cavalry general in the American Civil War, born near Chapel Hill, Tennessee, on the 13th of July 1821. Currently our beloved Lieutenant General Nathan Bedford Forrest and his wife, Mary Ann Montgomery Forrest, are still buried in Health Sciences Park, originally Forrest Park, in Memphis. MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The remains of General Nathan Bedford Forrest and his wife are set to be removed from Health Sciences Park in the next couple of … He was the first of blacksmith William Forrest's twelve children with wife Miriam Beck. [226], Grant himself described Forrest as "a brave and intrepid cavalry general" while noting that Forrest sent a dispatch on the Fort Pillow Massacre "in which he left out the part which shocks humanity to read". … When the statues were removed, the mayor said they "no longer represent who we are as a modern, diverse city with momentum.". John Goodwin, of Forrest's cavalry command, forwarded a dispatch listing the prisoners captured. I heard him make a speech in one of our Dens". [212] He grasped the doctrines of mobile warfare[213] that would eventually become prevalent in the 20th century. The Fourteenth addressed citizenship rights and equal protection of the laws for former slaves, while the Fifteenth specifically secured the voting rights of black men. [17][18] By the time the American Civil War started in 1861, he had become one of the richest men in the South, having amassed a "personal fortune that he claimed was worth $1.5 million". [90] These statements, however, were contradicted by Union survivors, as well as by the letter of a Confederate soldier who graphically recounted a massacre. Remains of Confederate general, his wife will be removed from Tennessee park A statue of Confederate Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest is shown Aug. 18, … Debate over the memory of this incident formed a part of sectional and racial conflicts for many years after the war, but the reinterpretation of the event during the last thirty years offers some hope that society can move beyond past intolerance. He did not say it that way, and nobody who knows anything about him imagines that he did.[217]. A contemporary newspaper account from Jackson, Tennessee stated that "General Forrest begged them to surrender" but "not the first sign of surrender was ever given". [165] These developments worked to the advantage of the Republicans, who focused on the Democratic Party's alleged disloyalty during and after the Civil War. Lee Millar with the Sons of Confederate Veterans tells Local 24 News they reached a settlement with Memphis and Greenspace, which owns the parks where the statues once stood. The body of Forrest’s wife will be exhumed as well. "[122] A memorial to him, the first Civil War memorial in Memphis, was erected in 1905 in a new Nathan Bedford Forrest Park. 5.] Forrest, who was a slave trader and early Ku Klux Klan leader, and his wife, Mary Ann, had their graves at Health Sciences Park, where a monument to Forrest used to be. Many memorials have been erected to Forrest, especially in Tennessee and adjacent Southern states. Forrest spoke in encouragement of black advancement and of endeavoring to be a proponent for espousing peace and harmony between black and white Americans. Before the war, Forrest amassed substantial wealth as a cotton plantation owner, horse and cattle trader, real estate broker, and slave trader. 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