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DODSON, TX (COLLINGSWORTH COUNTY)

DODSON, TEXAS (Collingsworth County). Dodson (Dodsonville), a mile west of the Texas-Oklahoma state line in southeastern Collingsworth County, was founded in the spring of 1910 by Frank Kell, promoter of the Wellington branch of the Wichita Falls and Northwestern Railway, and named for Elmore Dodson, who contributed a 200-acre grant of land as a bonus for the railroad. A gala celebration, complete with a picnic, marked the town's formal opening on August 29, 1910, and was attended by a trainload of people from Oklahoma. N. L. Jones built the first residence and opened a cotton gin. The first store was operated by William T. McDowell, who was also the first postmaster. R. H. Miller established a hotel, and the town added a bank, a telephone exchange, and two churches. Three newspapers, all called the Dodsonville News, were published intermittently by three different men between January 1911 and December 1915. A fourth paper, the Dodsonville Messenger, was printed from 1928 until 1930. School was sometimes held in the churches until a permanent schoolhouse was completed in the fall of 1912; the previous school was located three miles northwest of town. Dodson was incorporated in the 1920s and by 1930 had twenty-five businesses and a population of 426. Public Works Administration appropriations enabled the town to install a $52,000 water system during the 1930s, and a volunteer fire department was organized. In 1947 a new consolidated high school served neighboring communities in Oklahoma as well as Dodson. The population dropped to 357 in 1940; this decline, attributed to decreased agricultural activity and a renewed interest in cattle raising, continued into the 1990s. In 1984 Dodson remained the county's second largest town, with a population of 185, one business, and four churches. In 1990 the population was 113, and in 2000 it was 115.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Clyde Chestnut Brown, A Survey History of Collingsworth County, Texas (M.A. thesis, University of Colorado, 1934). A History of Collingsworth County and Other Stories (Wellington, Texas: Leader Printing, 1925).

H. Allen Anderson

Citation

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

H. Allen Anderson, "DODSON, TX (COLLINGSWORTH COUNTY)," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hld30), accessed November 20, 2014. Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
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