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Davidson, Robert Vance (1853–1925)

Carolyn Hyman Biography Entry

Robert Vance Davidson, lawyer and legislator, son of Allen Turner and Elizabeth (Howell) Davidson, was born at Murphy, North Carolina, on July 23, 1853. He studied law in Asheville, North Carolina, and was admitted to the bar before he moved to Texas in 1874. He settled in Galveston, where he was elected city attorney in 1879 and served for fourteen years on the school board. He was one of the authors of the city charter granted after the Galveston hurricane of 1900. He served as state senator in 1902 and 1903 and as attorney general from 1904 until 1910, during which time he handled the Waters-Pierce case. He ran unsuccessfully for governor of Texas in 1910 on an antiprohibition platform. In January 1911 he went into private practice in Dallas. Davidson and his wife, the former Laura Harrison Jack, were the parents of four children. He died in Dallas on July 3, 1925, and was buried in Lake View Cemetery, Galveston.

Dallas Morning News, July 4, 1925. Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.


  • Law, Law Enforcement, and Outlaws
  • Lawyers
  • General Law

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

Carolyn Hyman, “Davidson, Robert Vance,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed May 08, 2021,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

December 1, 1994