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Johnson, Robert Dabney (1812–1883)

William E. Bard Biography

Robert Dabney Johnson, attorney and county judge, son of William and Lucy B. (Dabney) Johnson, was born at Charlottesville, Virginia, on December 8, 1812. After he graduated from the University of Virginia and was admitted to the bar, he moved to Texas in 1837 and settled at Galveston. He was appointed notary public for Galveston on November 13, 1838. When the county was organized in 1839, he became county judge and in 1842 was appointed postmaster of Galveston. He held both posts for many years and had an extensive practice as an attorney. With his first wife, Caroline Matilda (Maffitt), he had two sons. After her death he married Mary Ann Rogers; they were the parents of six children. Johnson died at Galveston on October 4, 1883.

Galveston News, October 5, 1883. Amelia W. Williams and Eugene C. Barker, eds., The Writings of Sam Houston, 1813–1863 (8 vols., Austin: University of Texas Press, 1938–43; rpt., Austin and New York: Pemberton Press, 1970).


  • 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.

William E. Bard, “Johnson, Robert Dabney,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed September 29, 2020,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.