I commend you trying to determine how Forrest command was armed at Brice's Crossroads. Your assessment that Forrest's men rarely carried pistols or swords is very debatable. First- arming Forrest's men was a fluid affair during the whole war so determining what they were armed with would have to be dated; two- which units are you focusing on? Different units carried different arms. I have a request in 1862 by Forrest for pistols and swords. I have a request in early 1864 for 50,000 rounds of .54 cal ammunition for Forrest. I seen another for short barreled Enfields. I seen another for a large amount of ammunition for Sharps rifles. Below is another account of the arming of some of Forrest men....
"HDQRS. DETACHMENT EIGHTY-FIRST OHIO VOL. INFANTRY,
San. Mills’, February 2, 1864.
...The attack was made at a bend in the pike about 200 yards from Mr. Lee’s residence by 24 rebels (mounted), armed with 2 pistols and Colt revolving rifle each. They were lying behind a hill in waiting. The attack was made by throwing 6 men in the road in front of the teams and 18 men coming over ridge. All commenced firing about the same time at short pistol-range. They had our men surrounded and captured almost instantly. They took the men out east about 20 miles, and that evening gave them paroles, signed by
Captain Harris, Fourth Tennessee Cavalry, by order of General Forrest."
There is an account of Forrest's men at Brice's Crossroads shooting their pistols under the scrub black-jack oaks at the legs of the Union soldiers. There is another account (different battle) or Forrest's men (maybe 7th Tenn.) using their pistol to break up a cavalry charge upon their position. So pistols were very much apart of Forrest' troopers armiment but so were long arms. It depends on the unit and when.