Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Boca Chica in Cameron County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Battle of Palmito Ranch

 
 
Battle of Palmito Ranch Marker image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, August 10, 2010
1. Battle of Palmito Ranch Marker
Inscription. The last land engagement of the Civil War was fought near this site on May 12-13, 1865, thirty-four days after Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox. Col. Theodore H. Barrett commanded Federal troops on Brazos Island 12 miles to the east. The Confederates occupied Fort Brown 12 miles to the west, commanded by Gen. James E. Slaughter and Col. John S. (Rip) Ford, whose troops had captured Fort Brown from the Federals in 1864.

Ordered to recapture the fort, Lt. Col. David Branson and 300 men advanced from Brazos Island. They won a skirmish with Confederate pickets on May 12. Barrett reinforced Branson's troops with 200 men on May 13 and renewed the march to Fort Brown. Confederate cavalry held the Federals in check until Ford arrived with reinforcements that afternoon. Ford's artillery advanced and fired on the northern end of the Federal line while the cavalry charged. The Confederate right charged the southern end of the Federal line and captured part of the Union infantry. Barrett ordered a retreat toward the U.S. position on Brazos Island.

While the Confederates reported no fatalities in the Battle of Palmito Ranch, the Union forces reported four officers and 111 men killed, wounded or missing.
 
Erected 1990 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 327.)
 
Marker series.
Palmito Trees near marker image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, August 10, 2010
2. Palmito Trees near marker
This marker is included in the National Historic Landmarks marker series.
 
Location. 25° 57.696′ N, 97° 18.096′ W. Marker is in Boca Chica, Texas, in Cameron County. Marker can be reached from Boca Chica Boulevard (Texas Route 4) 0.1 miles east of Palmito Hill Road, on the right when traveling east. Click for map. Marker is approximately 12 miles east of Brownsville, Texas and about one mile north of the Rio Grande River. Marker is at or near this postal address: Boca Chica Boulevard, Brownsville TX 78521, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 6 other markers are within 13 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Site of Camp Belknap (approx. 4.5 miles away); Port of Matamoros (approx. 10 miles away); Palo Alto Battlefield (approx. 11.7 miles away); The Battle of Palo Alto (approx. 11.7 miles away); a different marker also named Palo Alto Battlefield (approx. 11.7 miles away); Southern Pacific Railroad Passenger Depot (approx. 12.9 miles away).
 
More about this marker. Designated National Historic Landmark, 1997.
 
Also see . . .
1. Handbook of Texas History. (Submitted on September 3, 2010, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
2. Battle of Palmito Ranch. (Submitted on September 4, 2010, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
 
Additional comments.
View from the Battle of Palmito Ranch Marker toward Port Isabel and South Padre Island image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, August 10, 2010
3. View from the Battle of Palmito Ranch Marker toward Port Isabel and South Padre Island

1.
The Confederate forces were helped in this one sided engagement by the loan of artillery pieces from the French army who were occupying Matamoros at that time. Note To Editor only visible by Contributor and editor    
    — Submitted February 25, 2012, by Joseph P. Linck of Brownsville, Texas.

 
Additional keywords. 34th Indiana Veteran Infantry Regiment; 61st U.S. Colored Infantry; USCT; Trans-Mississippi Theater; John J. Williams.
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
Battle of Palmito Ranch Marker image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, August 10, 2010
4. Battle of Palmito Ranch Marker
Pvt. John J. Williams, 34th Indiana Regiment:<br> the last soldier to die in the American Civil War image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller
5. Pvt. John J. Williams, 34th Indiana Regiment:
the last soldier to die in the American Civil War
- May 13, 1865, at the Battle of Palmito Ranch, Texas.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. This page has been viewed 1,606 times since then and 17 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.   3, 4, 5. submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on October 11, 2016.
Paid Advertisement