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Home Texas Harris County Houston Major Richard William (Dick) Dowling, C. S. A.

Major Richard William (Dick) Dowling, C. S. A.

  Texas Historical Markers
Houston, TX, USA
    Texas State
Historical Marker
     (January 14, 1837 - September 23, 1867) Born in 1837 near Tuam, County Galway, Ireland, Richard Dowling emigrated to New Orleans in 1846 during the Irish potato famine. In 1857, Dick married Elizabeth Anne Odlum in Houston. By 1860 he had owned 3 bars, installed Houston's first gas lighting in his home and business, and was a charter member of Houston Hook and Ladder company No. 1. During the Civil War, Dick was first lieutenant, Company F, Cook's Regiment, First Texas Heavy Artillery. He was in command at Fort Griffin in 1863. On September 8 he held fast with only 6 cannon and 47 men inside the fort despite reumors of a Federal invasion and orders to retreat. Twenty-seven ships carrying Maj. Gen. William B. Franklin and 5,000 Union troops sailed into Sabine Pass; Dowling and the Irish Davis Guards shot so accurately that Franklin's forces surrendered in 45 minutes. The Confederate Congress called the Battle of Sabine Pass one of the most brilliant ... achievements ... of this war. Discharged as a major in 1865, Dick reopened his most famous bar, The Bank of Bacchus. In 1866 he formed the first oil company in Houston. By 1867, he owned more than 22 square blocks of downtown Houston and vast lands across Texas. Dick Dowling died of yellow fever at age 30 and is buried in Houston's St. Vincent's Cemetery. (1998) Incise on back:

This page last updated: 7/15/2008

Related Themes: Texas C.S.A., Texas Confederate States of America, Confederacy
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