When the leaders of the Confederate Indians learned that the government in Richmond had fallen and the Eastern armies had been surrendered, they, too, began making plans to seek peace with yhe Federal government. The chiefs convened the Grand Council on June 15th and passed resolutions calling for Indian leaders to lay down their arms and for emissaries to approach Federal authorities for peace terms.
The largest force in Indian territory was commanded by Confederate Brig. Gen. Stand Watie, who was also a chief of the Cherokee Nation. Dedicated to the Confederate cause and unwilling to admit defeat, he kept his troops in the field for nearly a month after Lt. Gen. E. Kirby Smith surrendered the Trans-Mississippi on May 26th. Finally accepting the futility of continued resistence, on June 23rd, Watie rode into Doaksville near Fort Towson in Indian Territory and surrendered his battalion of Creek, Seminole, Cherokee, and Osage Indians to Lt. Col. Asa C. Matthews, appointed a few weeks earlier to negotiate a peace with the Indians. Watie was the last Confederate general officer to surrender his command.