The Battle of Palmito Ranch is considered by some criteria as the final battle of the American Civil War. It was fought May 12 and 13, 1865, on the banks of the Rio Grande east of Brownsville, Texas and a few miles from the seaport of Los Brazos de Santiago. Since the Confederacy had ceased to exist, it is also argued that this battle should be classified as a postwar action.
The American Civil War was a war fought in the United States from 1861 to 1865, between the North and the South. The Civil War is the most studied and written about episode in U.S. history. Primarily as a result of the long-standing controversy over the enslavement of black people, war broke out in April 1861 when secessionist forces attacked Fort Sumter in South Carolina shortly after Abraham Lincoln had been inaugurated as the President of the United States. The loyalists of the Union in the North proclaimed support for the Constitution. They faced secessionists of the Confederate States in the South, who advocated for states' rights to uphold slavery.
The Rio Grande is one of the principal rivers in the southwest United States and northern Mexico. The Rio Grande begins in south-central Colorado in the United States and flows to the Gulf of Mexico. Along the way, it forms part of the Mexico–United States border. According to the International Boundary and Water Commission, its total length was 1,896 miles (3,051 km) in the late 1980s, though course shifts occasionally result in length changes. Depending on how it is measured, the Rio Grande is either the fourth- or fifth-longest river system in North America.
Brownsville is a city in Cameron County in the U.S. state of Texas. It located on the western Gulf Coast in South Texas, adjacent to the border with Matamoros, Mexico. The city covers 81.528 square miles (211.157 km2) and has a population of 183,299 as of 2017. It is the 131st-largest city in the United States and 16th-largest in Texas. It is part of the Brownsville–Matamoros conurbation, with a population of 1,136,995 people. The city is known for its year-round subtropical climate, deep-water seaport and Hispanic culture.
Union and Confederate forces in southern Texas had been observing an unofficial truce since the beginning of 1865. But Union Colonel Theodore H. Barrett, newly assigned to command an all-black unit, and never having been in combat, ordered an attack on a Confederate camp near Fort Brown for unknown reasons. The Union attackers captured a few prisoners, but the following day the attack was repulsed near Palmito Ranch by Colonel John Salmon Ford, and the battle resulted in a Union defeat. Union forces were surprised by artillery, said to have been supplied by the French Army occupying the nearby Mexican town of Matamoros.
Fort Brown was a military post of the United States Army in Cameron County, Texas during the later half of the 19th century and the early part of the 20th century. Established in 1846, it was the first United States Army military outpost of the recently annexed state. Confederate Army troops stationed there saw action during the American Civil War. In the early 20th century, it was garrisoned in relation to military activity over border conflicts with Mexico. Surviving elements of the fort were designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1960.
John Salmon Ford, better known as "Rip" Ford, was a member of the Republic of Texas Congress and later of the State Senate, and mayor of Brownsville, Texas. He was also a Texas Ranger, a Confederate colonel, doctor, lawyer, and a journalist and newspaper owner. Ford commanded men during the Antelope Hills Expedition and he later commanded the Confederate forces in what was arguably the last engagement of the American Civil War, the Battle of Palmito Ranch on May 12–13, 1865. It was a Confederate victory, but as it occurred more than a month after Robert E. Lee's surrender it had no effect on the outcome of the war.
Matamoros, officially known as Heroica Matamoros, is a city in the northeastern Mexican state of Tamaulipas. It is located on the southern bank of the Rio Grande, directly across the border from Brownsville, Texas, in the United States. Matamoros is the second largest city in the state of Tamaulipas. As of 2016, Matamoros had a population of 520,367. In addition, the Matamoros–Brownsville Metropolitan Area has a population of 1,387,985, making it the 4th largest metropolitan area on the Mexico–US border. Matamoros is the 39th largest city in Mexico and anchors the second largest metropolitan area in Tamaulipas.
Casualty estimates are not dependable, but Union Private John J. Williams of the 34th Indiana Infantry Regiment is believed to have been the last man killed in this engagement. He could then arguably be reckoned as the last man killed in the war.
John Jefferson Williams was a Union soldier and private in Company B the 34th Regiment Indiana Infantry. He was killed at the Battle of Palmito Ranch, the last land battle of the Civil War, and is generally recognized as the last soldier killed in the American Civil War.
The 34th Indiana Veteran Volunteer Infantry Regiment, nicknamed The Morton Rifles, was an Infantry Regiment that served in the Union Army during the American Civil War. It had the distinction of fighting in the last land action of the war, the Battle of Palmito Ranch, Texas May 12–13, 1865, and also of suffering the last soldier killed during the war, Private John J. Williams.
The engagement is also known as the Battle of Palmito Hill.
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After July 27, 1864, the Union Army withdrew most of the 6,500 troops deployed to the lower Rio Grande Valley, including Brownsville, which they had occupied since November 2, 1863. The Confederates were determined to protect their remaining ports, which were essential for cotton sales to Europe and the importation of supplies. The Mexicans across the border tended to side with the Confederates because of the lucrative smuggling trade.Beginning in early 1865, the rival armies in south Texas honored a gentlemen's agreement, as they saw no point in further hostilities between them.
The Rio Grande Valley is an area located in the southernmost tip of South Texas. It lies along the northern bank of the Rio Grande, which separates Mexico from the United States. The four-county region consists of Hidalgo, Cameron, Willacy, and Starr counties. It is one of the fastest growing regions in the United States, with its population having jumped from about 325,000 people in 1969 to more than 1,300,000 people by 2014. Some of the biggest cities in the region are: Brownsville, Harlingen, Weslaco, Pharr, McAllen, Edinburg, Mission, San Juan, and Rio Grande City.
Cotton is a soft, fluffy staple fiber that grows in a boll, or protective case, around the seeds of the cotton plants of the genus Gossypium in the mallow family Malvaceae. The fiber is almost pure cellulose. Under natural conditions, the cotton bolls will increase the dispersal of the seeds.
Mexico, officially the United Mexican States, is a country in the southern portion of North America. It is bordered to the north by the United States; to the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; to the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and to the east by the Gulf of Mexico. Covering almost 2,000,000 square kilometres (770,000 sq mi), the nation is the fifth largest country in the Americas by total area and the 13th largest independent state in the world. With an estimated population of over 120 million people, the country is the eleventh most populous state and the most populous Spanish-speaking state in the world, while being the second most populous nation in Latin America after Brazil. Mexico is a federation comprising 31 states and Mexico City, a special federal entity that is also the capital city and its most populous city. Other metropolises in the state include Guadalajara, Monterrey, Puebla, Toluca, Tijuana and León.
Union Major General Lew Wallace proposed a negotiated end of hostilities in Texas to Confederate Brigadier General James E. Slaughter, and met with Slaughter and his subordinate Colonel Ford at Port Isabel on March 11–12, 1865.Despite Slaughter's and Ford's agreement that combat would prove tragic, Slaughter's superior, Confederate Maj. Gen. John G. Walker, rejected the ceasefire in a scathing exchange of letters with Wallace. Despite this, both sides honored a tacit agreement not to advance on the other without prior written notice.
Lewis Wallace was an American lawyer, Union general in the American Civil War, governor of the New Mexico Territory, politician, diplomat, and author from Indiana. Among his novels and biographies, Wallace is best known for his historical adventure story, Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ (1880), a bestselling novel that has been called "the most influential Christian book of the nineteenth century."
James Edwin Slaughter was a Virginia soldier who fought in the Mexican American War, and later resigned his commission in the United States Army to fight in the Confederate States Army, where he rose to the rank of Brigadier General.
Port Isabel is a city in Cameron County, Texas, United States. It is part of the Brownsville–Harlingen–Raymondville and the Matamoros–Brownsville metropolitan areas. The population was 5,006 at the 2010 census.
A brigade of 1,900 Union troops commanded by Col. Robert B. Jones of the 34th Indiana Veteran Volunteer Infantry were on blockade duty at the Port of Brazos Santiago at the mouth of the present-day ship channel of the Port of Brownsville. The 400-man 34th Indiana was an experienced regiment that had served in the Vicksburg Campaign and was reorganized in December 1863 as a "Veteran" regiment, composed entirely of veterans from several other regiments whose original enlistments had expired. The 34th Indiana deployed to Los Brazos de Santiago on December 22, 1864, replacing the 91st Illinois Volunteer Infantry, which returned to New Orleans. The brigade also included the 87th and 62nd United States Colored Infantry Regiments ("United States Colored Troops", or U.S.C.T.) which had a combined strength of about 1,100. Shortly after Gen. Walker rejected the armistice proposal, Col. Jones resigned from the army to return to Indiana. He was replaced in the regiment by Lt. Col. Robert G. Morrison and at Los Brazos de Santiago by Colonel Theodore H. Barrett, commander of the 62nd U.S.C.T.
A blockade is an effort to cut off supplies, war material or communications from a particular area by force, either in part or totally. A blockade should not be confused with an embargo or sanctions, which are legal barriers to trade. It is also distinct from a siege in that a blockade is usually directed at an entire country or region, rather than a fortress or city. While most blockades historically took place at sea, blockade is still used on land to prevent someone coming into a certain area.
The Vicksburg Campaign was a series of maneuvers and battles in the Western Theater of the American Civil War directed against Vicksburg, Mississippi, a fortress city that dominated the last Confederate-controlled section of the Mississippi River. The Union Army of the Tennessee under Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant gained control of the river by capturing this stronghold and defeating Lt. Gen. John C. Pemberton's forces stationed there.
New Orleans is a consolidated city-parish located along the Mississippi River in the southeastern region of the U.S. state of Louisiana. With an estimated population of 393,292 in 2017, it is the most populous city in Louisiana. A major port, New Orleans is considered an economic and commercial hub for the broader Gulf Coast region of the United States.
The 30-year-old Barrett had been an army officer since 1862, but he had yet to see combat. Anxious for higher rank, he volunteered for the newly raised "colored" regiments and was appointed in 1863 as colonel of the 1st Missouri Colored Infantry. In March 1864, the regiment became the 62nd U.S.C.T. Barrett contracted malaria in Louisiana that summer, and while he was on convalescent leave, the 62nd was posted to Brazos Santiago. He joined it there in February 1865.
Historians still debate why this engagement at Palmito Ranch took place. Lee had surrendered to Grant in Appomattox Court House, Virginia, on April 9, triggering a series of formal surrenders in other places throughout the country. The Confederate and Union officers in Brownsville also knew that Lee had surrendered, effectively ending the war.
Soon after the battle, Barrett's detractors claimed he desired "a little battlefield glory before the war ended altogether."Others have suggested that Barrett needed horses for the 300 unmounted cavalrymen in his brigade and decided to take them from his enemy. Louis J. Schuler, in his 1960 pamphlet "The last battle in the War Between the States, May 13, 1865: Confederate Force of 300 defeats 1,700 Federals near Brownsville, Texas", asserts that Brig. Gen. Egbert B. Brown of the U.S. Volunteers had ordered the expedition to seize as contraband 2,000 bales of cotton stored in Brownsville and sell them for his own profit. But Brown was not even appointed to command at Brazos Santiago until later in May.
According to historian Jerry Thompson:
Union Lieutenant Colonel David Branson wanted to attack the Confederate encampments commanded by Ford at White and Palmito ranches near Fort Brown outside Brownsville. Branson's Union forces consisted of 250 men of the 62nd U.S.C.T. in eight companies and two companies of the (U.S.) 2nd Texas Cavalry Battalion. The 300-man 2nd Texas, like the earlier-formed 1st Texas Cavalry Regiment, was composed largely of Texans of Mexican origin who remained loyal to the United States.They moved from Brazos Santiago to the mainland. At first Branson's expedition was successful, capturing three prisoners and some supplies, although it failed to achieve the desired surprise. During the afternoon, Confederate forces under Captain William N. Robinson counterattacked with less than 100 cavalry, driving Branson back to White's Ranch, where the fighting stopped for the night. Both sides sent for reinforcements; Ford arrived with six French guns and the remainder of his cavalry force (for a total of 300 men), while Barrett came with 200 troops of the 34th Indiana in nine under-strength companies.
The next day, Barrett started advancing westward, passing a half-mile to the west of Palmito Ranch, with skirmishers from the 34th Indiana deployed in advance.Ford attacked Barrett's force as it was skirmishing with an advance Confederate force along the Rio Grande about 4 p.m. He sent a couple of companies with artillery to attack the Union right flank and the remainder of his force into a frontal attack. After some confusion and fierce fighting, the Union forces retreated toward Boca Chica. Barrett attempted to form a rearguard, but Confederate artillery prevented him from rallying a force sufficient to do so. During the retreat, which lasted until 14 May, 50 members of the 34th Indiana's rearguard company, 30 stragglers, and 20 of the dismounted cavalry were surrounded in a bend of the Rio Grande and captured. The battle is recorded as a Confederate victory.
Fighting in the battle involved Caucasian, African-American, Hispanic, and Native American troops. Reports of shots from the Mexican side, the sounding of a warning to the Confederates of the Union approach, the crossing of Imperial cavalry into Texas, and the participation by several among Ford's troops are unverified, despite many witnesses reporting shooting from the Mexican shore.
In Barrett's official report of August 10, 1865, he reported 115 Union casualties: one killed, nine wounded, and 105 captured.Confederate casualties were reported as five or six wounded, with none killed. Historian and Ford biographer Stephen B. Oates, however, concludes that Union deaths were much higher, probably around 30, many of whom drowned in the Rio Grande or were attacked by French border guards on the Mexican side. He likewise estimated Confederate casualties at approximately the same number.
Using court-martial testimony and post returns from Brazos Santiago, historian Jerry D. Thompson of Texas A&M International University determined that:
Private John J. Williamsof the 34th Indiana was the last fatality during the Battle at Palmito Ranch, likely making him the final combat death of the entire war.
President Jefferson Davis was captured and imprisoned on May 10, 1865, marking the effective end of the Confederate government. In addition, that day United States President Andrew Johnson declared "armed resistance ...virtually at an end."Historian James McPherson joins other historians in concluding that the war ended when the government ended.
Confederate General Edmund Kirby Smith officially surrendered all Confederate forces in the Trans-Mississippi Department on June 2, 1865, except those under the command of Brigadier General Chief Stand Watie in the Indian Territory.Stand Watie, of the 1st Cherokee Mounted Rifles, on June 23, 1865, became the last Confederate general to surrender his forces, in Doaksville, Indian Territory. On that same day, United States President Andrew Johnson ended the Union blockade of the Southern states.
Many senior Confederate commanders in Texas (including Smith, Walker, Slaughter, and Ford) and many troops with their equipment fled across the border to Mexico. Wanting to resist capture, they may also have intended to ally with French Imperial forces, or with Mexican forces under deposed President Benito Juárez.
The Military Division of the Southwest (after June 27 the Division of the Gulf), commanded by Maj. Gen. Phillip H. Sheridan, occupied Texas between June and August. Consisting of the IV Corps, XIII Corps, the African-American XXV Corps, and two 4,000-man cavalry divisions commanded by Brig. Gen. Wesley Merritt and Maj. Gen. George A. Custer, it aggregated a 50,000-man force on the Gulf Coast and along the Rio Grande to pressure the French intervention in Mexico and garrison the Reconstruction Department of Texas.
In July 1865, Barrett preferred charges of disobedience of orders, neglect of duty, abandoning his colors, and conduct prejudicial to good order and military discipline against Morrison for actions in the battle, resulting in the latter's court martial. Confederate Col. Ford, who had returned from Mexico at the request of Union Gen. Frederick Steele to act as parole commissioner for disbanding Confederate forces, appeared as a defense witness and assisted in absolving Morrison of responsibility for the defeat at Palmito Ranch.
The history of this engagement provides accounts of the roles of Hispanic Confederate veterans and of the treatment by Confederates in South Texas of black prisoners-of-war. Hispanic Confederates served at Fort Brown in Brownsville and on the field of Palmito Ranch. Col. Santos Benavides, who was the highest-ranking Hispanic in either army, led between 100 and 150 Hispanic soldiers in the Brownsville Campaign in May 1865.
Some of the Sixty-Second Colored Regiment were also taken [in the Battle of Palmito Ranch]. They had been led to believe that if captured they would either be shot or returned to slavery. They were agreeably surprised when they were paroled and permitted to depart with the white prisoners. Several of the prisoners were from Austin and vicinity. They were assured they would be treated as prisoners of war. There was no disposition to visit upon them a mean spirit of revenge.— Colonel John Salmon Ford, May 1865
When Colonel Ford surrendered his command following the campaign of Palmito Ranch, he urged his men to honor their paroles. He insisted that "The negro had a right to vote."
Although officially most historians say this was the last land action fought between the North and the South, some sources suggest that the battle on May 19, 1865 of Hobdy's Bridge, located near Eufaula, Alabama, was the last skirmish between the two forces. Union records show that the last Northern soldier killed in combat during the war was Corporal John W. Skinner in this action. Three others were wounded, also from the same unit, Company C, 1st Florida U.S. Cavalry.
Historian Richard Gardiner stated in 2013 that on May 10, 1865:
The Confederates won this engagement, but as there was no organized command structure, there has been controversy about the Union casualties. In 1896 these same men had their pensions cut, although this was quickly rectified by an appeal to the commissioner of pensions. The assistant secretary to the commissioner overturned the pension cut, legally ruling the men as the last Union casualties of the war.
On April 2, 1866, President Johnson declared the insurrection at an end, except in Texas. There a technicality concerning incomplete formation of a new state government prevented declaring the insurrection over.Johnson declared the insurrection at an end in Texas and throughout the United States on August 20, 1866.
Palmito Ranch Battlefield
|Nearest city||Brownsville, Texas|
|Area||6,000 acres (2,400 ha)|
|NRHP reference #||93000266|
|Added to NRHP||June 23, 1993|
|Designated NHL||September 25, 1997|
The area has remained relatively unchanged, with the marshy, windswept prairies almost the same as they were in 1865. The site is more than 5,400 acres (2,200 ha) in size, and was designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1997. The area is indicated by a large highway marker telling the history of the engagement, installed on the "Boca Chica Highway" (Texas State Highway 4) near where Palmito Ranch originally stood. The Civil War Trust (a division of the American Battlefield Trust) and its partners have acquired and preserved 3 acres (0.012 km2) of the battlefield.
Bob McLendon, event coordinator and member of Pvt. Augustus Braddy Camp 385, an event sponsor, said ... on May 19, 1865 ... "Cpl. John W. Skinner of First Florida Cavalry was killed and three Union soldiers were wounded and were the last casualties of the war."
Santos Benavides was a Confederate colonel during the American Civil War. Benavides was the highest-ranking Tejano soldier in the Confederate military.
The Battle of Namozine Church, Virginia was an engagement between Union Army and Confederate States Army forces that occurred on April 3, 1865 during the Appomattox Campaign of the American Civil War. The battle was the first engagement between units of General Robert E. Lee's Confederate Army of Northern Virginia after that army's evacuation of Petersburg and Richmond, Virginia on April 2, 1865 and units of the Union Army under the immediate command of Maj. Gen. Philip Sheridan, who was still acting independently as commander of the Army of the Shenandoah, and under the overall direction of Union General-in-Chief Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant. The forces immediately engaged in the battle were brigades of the cavalry division of Union Brig. Gen. and Brevet Maj. Gen. George Armstrong Custer, especially the brigade of Colonel and Brevet Brig. Gen. William Wells, and the Confederate rear guard cavalry brigades of Brig. Gen. William P. Roberts and Brig. Gen. Rufus Barringer and later in the engagement, Confederate infantry from the division of Maj. Gen. Bushrod Johnson.
The U.S. state of Texas declared its secession from the United States of America on February 1, 1861, and joined the Confederate States on March 2, 1861, after it replaced its governor, Sam Houston, when he refused to take an oath of allegiance to the Confederacy. As with those of other States, the Declaration was not recognized by the United States government at Washington. Some Texan military units fought in the Civil War east of the Mississippi River, but Texas was most useful for supplying soldiers and horses for Confederate forces. Texas' supply role lasted until mid-1863, after which time Union gunboats controlled the Mississippi River, making large transfers of men, horses or cattle impossible. Some cotton was sold in Mexico, but most of the crop became useless because of the Union naval blockade of Galveston, Houston, and other ports.
Arthur Pendleton Bagby Jr. was an American lawyer, editor, and Confederate States Army colonel during the American Civil War. Confederate General E. Kirby Smith, commander of the Trans-Mississippi Department assigned Bagby to duty as a brigadier general on April 13, 1864 to date from March 17, 1864 and as a major general on May 16, 1865. These extra-legal appointments were not made official by appointments of Bagby to general officer grade by Confederate President Jefferson Davis or by confirmation by the Confederate Senate.
Indiana, a state in the Midwest, played an important role in supporting the Union during the American Civil War. Despite anti-war activity within the state, and southern Indiana's ancestral ties to the South, Indiana was a strong supporter of the Union. Indiana contributed approximately 210,000 Union soldiers, sailors, and marines. Indiana's soldiers served in 308 military engagements during the war; the majority of them in the western theater, between the Mississippi River and the Appalachian Mountains. Indiana's war-related deaths reached 25,028. Its state government provided funds to purchase equipment, food, and supplies for troops in the field. Indiana, an agriculturally rich state containing the fifth-highest population in the Union, was critical to the North's success due to its geographical location, large population, and agricultural production. Indiana residents, also known as Hoosiers, supplied the Union with manpower for the war effort, a railroad network and access to the Ohio River and the Great Lakes, and agricultural products such as grain and livestock. The state experienced two minor raids by Confederate forces, and one major raid in 1863, which caused a brief panic in southern portions of the state and its capital city, Indianapolis.
The Army of the Trans-Mississippi was a major Confederate army under the Department of the Trans-Mississippi during the American Civil War. It was the last major Confederate command to surrender, submitting on May 26, 1865, exactly one month after General Johnston had surrendered in the eastern United States.
James Hobart Ford was a Union colonel and brevet brigadier general during the American Civil War, notable for his contributions in the Trans-Mississippi Theater of the war.
This is a timeline of the conclusion of the American Civil War which includes important battles, skirmishes, raids and other events of 1865. These led to additional Confederate surrenders, key Confederate captures, and disbandments of Confederate military units that occurred after Gen. Robert E. Lee’s surrender on April 9, 1865.
Daniel Showalter (1830–1866), was a California miner, state legislator, duelist, secessionist, and Confederate States of America military officer in Texas.
The Battle of Bentonville was fought in Johnston County, North Carolina, near the village of Bentonville, as part of the Western Theater of the American Civil War. It was the last battle between the armies of Union Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman and Confederate Gen. Joseph E. Johnston.
The Battle of Brownsville took place on November 2-6, 1863 during the American Civil War. It was a successful effort on behalf of the Union Army to disrupt Confederate blockade runners along the Gulf Coast in Texas. The Union assault precipitated the capture of Matamoros by a force of Mexican patriots, led by exiled officers living in Brownsville.
The First Missouri Regiment of Colored Infantry was an African-American infantry regiment that served in the Union Army during the American Civil War. It was redesignated as the 62nd Regiment of U.S. Colored Troops on March 11, 1864.
Henry Marshall Ashby was a Confederate States Army colonel during the American Civil War. Although he commanded a brigade from June 1864 and a division at the Battle of Bentonville and through the surrender of the Confederate force under the command of General Joseph E. Johnston, he was never appointed a brigadier general by Confederate President Jefferson Davis or confirmed as a general officer by the Confederate Senate.
Moses Wright Hannon was a Confederate States Army colonel during the American Civil War. In August 1864, he was assigned to duty as an acting brigadier general by General John Bell Hood, subject to appointment by Confederate President Jefferson Davis and confirmation by the Confederate Senate. Although Hannon commanded a brigade in the cavalry corps of the Army of Tennessee and in Major General Joseph Wheeler's cavalry corps from June 1864 until the end of the war, he never was officially appointed by Jefferson Davis and confirmed by the Confederate Senate to brigadier general rank.
The Battle of Camp Wildcat was one of the early engagements of the American Civil War. It occurred October 21, 1861, in northern Laurel County, Kentucky during the campaign known as the Kentucky Confederate Offensive or Operations in Eastern Kentucky (1861). The battle is considered one of the first Union victories of the Civil War, and marked the second engagement of troops in the Commonwealth of Kentucky.
Brazos Island, also known as Brazos Santiago Island, is a barrier island on the Gulf Coast of Texas in the United States, south of the town of South Padre Island. The island is located in Cameron County.
The 41st United States Colored Infantry was an infantry regiment that served in the Union Army during the American Civil War. The regiment was composed of African American enlisted men commanded by white officers and was authorized by the Bureau of Colored Troops which was created by the United States War Department on May 22, 1863. The regiment engaged in the Siege of Petersburg and Appomattox Campaign and was present at the unconditional surrender of Confederate General Robert E. Lee and the Army of Northern Virginia at Appomattox Court House on April 9, 1865.
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