Battle Person Detail

Ford, John S.

Since March 1865, a gentleman'³ agreement precluded fighting between Union and Confederate forces on the Rio Grande. In spite of this agreement, Colonel Theodore H. Barrett, commanding forces at Brazos Santiago, Texas, dispatched an expedition, composed of 250 men of the 62nd U.S. Colored Infantry Regiment and 50 men of the 2nd Texas Cavalry Regiment under the command of Lieutenant Colonel David Branson, to the mainland, on May 11, 1865, to attack reported Confederate outposts and camps. Prohibited by foul weather from crossing to Point Isabel as instructed, the expedition crossed to Boca Chica much later. Although successful at first in his attacks on the Confederate outposts, the following day he was hammered by Confederate cavalry and artillery. To preclude an enemy flanking movement, Barrett ordered a retreat. The retreat was orderly and skirmishers held the Confederates at a respectable distance. This was the last battle in the Civil War. Native, African, and Hispanic Americans were all involved in the fighting.