Davis, Samuel Boyer (1827–1885)

By: Allan C. Ashcraft

Type: Biography

Published: 1976

Updated: December 1, 1994

Samuel Boyer Davis, military officer, was born in 1827 in Louisiana; he attended the United States Military Academy for about six months. He served on the Texas border during the early part of the Mexican War and later saw service as an officer of the Fourteenth Infantry under Col. Paul O. Hébert. He was brevetted first lieutenant at Churubusco, suffered a wound at Molino del Rey, and was in action at Chapultepec and Mexico City. After the war Davis resided in Texas until the Civil War. In mid-1861 he organized seven companies from Harris, Caldwell, Galveston, Leon, Montgomery, Washington, Liberty, and Fort Bend counties, formed them into Davis's Mounted Battalion, and became major of that unit. He also was assistant adjutant general at General Hébert's headquarters for the District of Texas. On December 7, 1861, Maj. Xavier B. DeBray assumed command of the mounted battalion when Davis assumed full-time administrative functions under Hébert. In February 1862 three more companies from Montgomery, Grimes, and Harris counties were added to DeBray's command, which was reorganized as the Twenty-sixth Texas Cavalry. When Hébert appointed Davis colonel of the new unit, members of the regiment protested and claimed the right to elect their own officers. Davis then resigned from the unit, and DeBray was elected regimental commander. Davis was first married to Mary Minerva Monk Clark, with whom he had two sons; his wife and children died in 1854–55 during a yellow fever epidemic. On March 28, 1867, he married Rhoda Catherine Milby in Galveston; they had five daughters and three sons. After this marriage Davis lived in Houston and Galveston; he died in 1885 while visiting in New Orleans.

Service Records, National Archives, Washington.
Time Periods:
  • Civil War

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

Allan C. Ashcraft, “Davis, Samuel Boyer,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed June 30, 2022, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/davis-samuel-boyer.

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

December 1, 1994

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