Friday, August 27, 2010

Arphax Dawson

Given name is spelled various ways: Arphaxton/Arphax/Arphaxad . It is a biblical name and reference to it can be found in the Book of Genesis 10:22. Arphaxad was the son of Shem and grandson of Noah.

Richard B. McCaslin's book "Tainted Breeze," gives this account of Arphax:
"Arphax R. Dawson immigrated to Texas from Illinois; he is listed in the 1860 Grayson County census (F.N. 642) as a farmer from Georgia, age fifty-five, with $3,297 in real and personal property. His wife, Jane, was from Tennessee; their five children had been born in Illinois, Missouri, and Texas. Their oldest daughter, Mary Ann, married Rama Dye on June 27, 1861."

Arphaxton. R. Dawson was born 1805 in Oglethorpe County, Georgia. He was married about 1824 to Mary HORN near Sewanne, Franklin, Tennessee. They had twelve known children (listed below). Mary died in 1856 in Franklin County, Illinois. Arphax then married Jane Caroline Stalcup. They had three known children (listed below.) He and second wife, Jane, were living in Sherman, Grayson County in October 1862. Arphaxton R. DAWSON died 19 Oct 1862 "The Great Hanging" at Gainesville. He was 57 years old at the time of his death. Some online accounts state that his body was taken back to Grayson County for burial, but NO burial site is known.

During the proceedings of the ‘Citizens Court” Arphax gave testimony in the trial of his son-in-law, Ramey Dye.  Testimony: “Ramey Dye came to my house and told me that M. D. Harper had been arrested on the charge of being connected with our society; and that there would be a meeting held that night, (1 Oct 1862) near Lattimer’s and Richies’ steam mill, for the purpose of consulting how to rescue Harper. He wished me to attend and bring my gun, which I did. The meeting was attended by Ramey Dye, John M. Wiley, Isham Welch, Wm Boyles, Jon Ware, H. Gilman, Robt Duncan and others. He talked about the rescue of Harper. We came to the conclusion that the force at Gainesville was too strong for us to accomplish our purpose.”
Arphax Dawson was tried in a group trial (5 men) and found guilty of “giving the signs, grip, and password, and were active members of Capt Ramey Dye’s company.” They were found guilty and hanged.
George Washington Diamond's Account of the Great Hanging at Gainesville, 1862, ManuscripteEdited by Sam Acheson and Julie The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Vol. LXVI, January, 1963, No. 3, pages 331-414

In the "Tainted Breeze," McCaslin states that "Arphax R. Dawson and James A. Ward, had tried to flee the state but found their way across the Red River blocked by unseasonably high water brought on by the deluge of October 1."

Rama Dye, the son-in-law of Arphax Dawson, was also tried by the 'Citizens Court', found guilty of treason and hanged.  His wife, Mary Ann Dawson Dye, lost both her husband and father during those dreadful October days when so many men were hanged.

Arphax had three sons who fought in Confederate units.  According to a descendant, Ephriam A. Dawson was serving in a Confederate Texas Cavalry unit on the very day that his father was hanged by the confederates in Gainesville .

Arphax can be found in the following census records:
Census: 1840 in Franklin County, IL
Census: 1850 in Franklin County, IL
Census: 1860 Grayson County, Texas

Jane Dawson, was married once before. Her first husband is believed to be William Bland. In the 1860 census, 2 boys named James BLAND (b. abt 1850 TN) and John R. J. BLAND (b. abt 1853 TN) are living in the Dawson household. Jane C. and Arphaxton married in late 1856 or early 1857 (no marriage record found) as they had their first child Arfax DAWSON in 1857 in Missouri on their way down to Texas from Illinois.

Arphaxton and Mary HORN had the following children:
1. Allen DAWSON b. 1825 d. 1877 m. 1848 Mary C. VAUGHN; buried in Dawson Cemetery, Franklin Co., IL Descendants known.
2. Minerva DAWSON b. 1826 Alabama; m. 1850 William J. FLETCHER in Franklin Co., IL; descendants known (she names one of her sons Arfax)
3. Susan DAWSON b. abt 1827 m. HARRISON Descendants unknown
4. Rebecca Jane DAWSON b. abt 1828 AL; m. 1850 George LEFLER in Franklin Co., IL; descendants known
5. William DAWSON b. abt 1829 m. Melinda HAMON Franklin Co., IL; some descendants known
6. Juda "Judith" DAWSON b. abt 1834 White Co., IL m. 1853 Henry FLETCHER Franklin Co., IL; descendants known.
7. Samuel J. DAWSON b. abt 1838 AL; m. 1859 Mary Jane SKAGGS Cooke Co., TX; descendants not known
8. Ephraim A. DAWSON b. 1840 Franklin Co., IL; d. 1926 Cooke Co., TX; buried Mt. Zion Cemetery, Cooke Co., TX; m. 1861 (1) Sarah Jane WARD 1861 (2) Lucinda PARSONS 1868; descendants known
9. Mary Ann DAWSON b. abt 1843 Franklin Co., IL; m. 1861 (1) Rama DYE in Cooke Co., TX (he was also hanged in The Great Hanging Oct 1862) and (2) William T. HORTON ; descendants unknown
10. Nancy Catherine DAWSON b. abt 1845 Franklin Co., IL; m. 1861 A. DICKERSON in Grayson Co., TX; unknown descendants
11. George W. DAWSON b. abt 1846 Franklin Co., IL; m. (1) Cordelia REEVES (2) Sarah HUFFACRE in 1867 Cooke Co., TX; descendants unknown
12. Canzada DAWSON b. abt 1849 Franklin Co., IL; m. William KING in TX; nothing more known

Arphax R. DAWSON and his second wife Jane had the following children:
1. Arfax DAWSON b. 1857 Missouri; m. 1882 Mary Elizabeth FUTRELL in Dallas, Dallas, TX. She died in 1883 and nothing more in known of Anfaxton.
2. America Jane DAWSON b. 1859 Sherman, Grayson, TX;
d. 1939 Willis, Marshall, OK, buried in Marlow, Stephens, TX
m. Dennis Morgan MURPHY 1874 in Dallas Co., TX; descendants known.
3. Parthena T. DAWSON b. 27 Jun 1861 Sherman, Grayson, TX; d. 1916 Dallas, Dallas, TX; buried Laurel Oaks Cemetery, Old Bennett Cemetery section, Mesquite TX. She married (1) James WILLS 1877 Dallas Co., TX; ended in divorce; she had one child, Mary, with him; nothing known of her. (2) Samuel Wayne FUTRELL in 1882 Dallas, Dallas, TX; Descendants known.

Arphaxton R. DAWSON's second wife, Jane C. remarried Creed Taylor WALTHALL, a minister and farmer, on 26 Jan 1864 in Grayson County, Texas. They had the following children: Thomas WALTHALL b. abt. 1864 and Milton WALTHALL b. abt 1866 - nothing more in known about them.
Jane C. Dawson Walthall d. 1902 Dallas, Dallas, TX; buried in the Laurel Oaks Cemetery (Bennett section) in Mesquite, TX


The man, the dad and the husband said...

I am a descendant of Ephram and am so excited I found this page. I am sitting in Gainesville right now and am about to take some pictures for my family tree. This will make it a little more personal.

Cindy Faulkner said...

I am a descendant of America Jane Dawson Murphy, daughter of Arphaxton R. Dawson & second wife Jane C. I am happy to hear that there will be a memorial created.

Kathryn Craig said...

I am a descendant of Parthenia Dawson, youngest daughter of Arphaxton Dawson. She was my grandmother's mother. She died the year my mother was born. I want to visit Gainesville someday and the site of this tragedy.