Barton, Thomas Dickson (1875–1944)

By: Jeanette H. Flachmeier

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: October 20, 2018

Thomas Dickson Barton, soldier, son of George and Ellen Barton, was born at Kilgore, Texas, on January 20, 1875. He was in the newspaper business for about ten years, worked as a drug salesman for a Kansas City firm, and operated a retail drugstore in Amarillo. He became a private in the Sixth Texas Infantry on July 10, 1892, and was commissioned first lieutenant, Company F, in February 1895. During the Spanish-American War, from May 1898 to August 1899, he was first sergeant in the First Montana Infantry, stationed in the Philippine Islands. Barton was captain of Company E, Fourth Texas Infantry, from 1905 to 1917, when he entered the federal service. He commanded Company G, 142nd Infantry, through its training period and in France. In October 1918 he was promoted to major and awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, the Croix de Guerre, and the Italian Croce al Merite de Guerra. He was in charge of the military police of the Thirty-sixth Division and later served on the military mission for repatriation of Russian prisoners in Berlin. After discharge from the United States Army on October 10, 1919, he was appointed adjutant general of Texas, on January 20, 1921, and served until January 23, 1925. In 1924 he ran for governor as a Democrat on a platform of limiting state government responsibility to police protection, the judiciary, and education. He retired from the army as a major general on July 6, 1938.

Barton married Rowena McCoy on November 5, 1905. After her death he married Mrs. Lillian Leman, who survived him. He died in San Antonio on November 28, 1944, and was buried in Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery, San Antonio.

Austin Statesman, June 26, 1921. Ellis A. Davis, and Edwin H. Grobe, comps., The New Encyclopedia of Texas, 4-vol. ed. San Antonio Express, November 29, 1944. Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.

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

Jeanette H. Flachmeier, “Barton, Thomas Dickson,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed May 29, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

October 20, 2018