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 Richard William Dowling

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Richard William Dowling

Civil War Confederate Army Officer. While serving as a 1st Lieutenant, at twenty-six years of age, he commanded Fort Griffin during the 1863 Battle of Sabine Pass. It was a garrison of less than fifty men when the Union Army launched the twenty-two ship invasion fleet from New Orleans. On board were five-thousand soldiers, sailors, and marines, plus enough livestock, munitions, and equipment for the capture and occupation of Texas. The resulting battle was a Confederate victory yielding two Union gunboats and three hundred and fifty prisoners. Lieutenant Dowling was promoted to Major and spent the remainder of the war traveling and recruiting troops for the State of Texas. When the war ended in 1865, Federal authorities paroled him, and he returned to his many business enterprises in Houston. He held membership in several civic organizations and a Houston volunteer fire company. In 1867, he contracted yellow fever and died at age thirty. His Houston Hook and Ladder Company carried him to his final resting place in St. Vincent’s Cemetery in Houston while a soft rain fell and thousands of hushed Texans lined the streets. Many public works and schools have been named for him in Southeast Texas. The Sons of Confederate Veterans Camp #1295 in Beaumont and Camp #1305 in Houston are named for him, as well as United Daughters of the Confederacy Chapter #404 in Beaumont.

Bio by: Clay Homister


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Clay Homister
  • Added: 30 Sep 2002
  • Find A Grave Memorial 6813103
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Richard William Dowling (Jan 1837–23 Sep 1867), Find A Grave Memorial no. 6813103, citing Saint Vincents Cemetery, Houston, Harris County, Texas, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .