Dodson, Archelaus Bynum (1807–1898)

By: Agnes G. Grimm

Type: Biography

Published: 1976

Updated: January 26, 2017

Archelaus Dodson, participant in the Texas Revolution, son of Obadiah and Sarah (Garrison) Dodson, was born in North Carolina on December 31, 1807. He left for Texas in 1826, and was living in Harrisburg in 1827. He married Sarah Bradley there on May 17, 1835; they had six children. When the local committee of vigilance and safety learned of Gen. Martín Perfecto de Cos's planned invasion of Texas and sent out a call to arms on September 19, 1835, Dodson joined other Harrisburg volunteers in forming a company under Capt. Andrew Robinson. Dodson was elected first lieutenant.

Sarah Bradley Dodson designed and, with help of other Harrisburg women, made the first tricolor Lone Star flag of Texas; when the company of Andrew Robinson, Jr., was mustered into the revolutionary army in 1835, she presented it to the members (see FLAGS OF THE TEXAS REVOLUTION). The Robinson company participated in the siege of Bexar and did not return to East Texas until early 1836, still led by the Dodson flag. Dodson was among those detailed to ensure the safety of women and children beyond the Brazos River in the Runaway Scrape; he contracted measles from some of the sick children and was unable to participate in the battle of San Jacinto.

The Dodsons continued to live in Fort Bend County until 1844, when they claimed their headright in Grimes County. Sarah Dodson died in 1848, and Dodson married Katherine Maria McKnight McWhorter, a widow with several children, in 1850. He moved the family to Live Oak County in 1860 and became a rancher with his brother-in-law, Martin Culver, a cattleman. Dodson died on his ranch about five miles south of Alice on March 10, 1898, and was buried in the Old Collins Cemetery.

Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.

Time Periods:
  • Texas Revolution
  • Houston
  • Upper Gulf Coast
  • East Texas

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

Agnes G. Grimm, “Dodson, Archelaus Bynum,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed June 24, 2022,

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January 26, 2017

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