1 of 4
Michael Graczyk, Associated Press
Craig Stone, chairman of the Civil War Sesquicentennial Committee of the Cameron County Historical Commission, looks out over the Palmito Ranch Battlefield, scene of the last land battle of the Civil War 150 years ago near Brownsville, Texas, on April 29, 2015. The battle began May 12, 1865, a month after Robert E. Lee surrendered to Ulysses Grant at Appomattox in Virginia, when Union forces at the mouth of the Rio Grande moved toward Confederates at Brownsville. The following day, the Confederates led by a former Texas Ranger and newspaper editor routed the Union soldiers.

BROWNSVILLE, Texas — It's common knowledge that the four bloody years of the American Civil War came to an end when Southern Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered to Union Gen. Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox — but it's not true.

The final land battle of the war wasn't fought until more than a month later, 150 years ago Tuesday and Wednesday, on a wind-swept coastal plain at the southern tip of Texas.

And the Confederates won.

In the battle, Hispanic men fought for the South and black soldiers for the North. Union Pvt. John J. Williams, from the 34th Indiana, is considered by many historians to be the last soldier killed in a war that claimed more than 600,000 soldiers' lives.

A local historic group is holding an anniversary ceremony there Tuesday.