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First Name: Henry

Last Name: Dodge

Birthplace: Vincennes, IN, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Date of Birth: 12 October 1782

Date of Death: 19 June 1867

Rank: Colonel

Years Served:
Henry Dodge

•  War of 1812


Henry Dodge
Colonel, U.S. Army

Henry Dodge was born on 12 October 1782 in Vincennes, IN.

Dodge enlisted in the War of 1812 as a Captain in the Missouri State Volunteers, eventually rising to Major General of the Missouri Militia.

He established successful mining operations in Illinois before taking up residence in what is now Dodgeville, WI. He led a force of mounted Michigan Territory Militia in the Black Hawk War, and fought in the Battle of Wisconsin Heights. In 1832 he was commissioned a Major in the U.S. Regular Army to lead a battalion of mounted infantry authorized by Congress.

He was subsequently promoted to Colonel, and his unit was expanded to a full regiment, designated the 1st U.S. Dragoons, which has the distinction of being the first mounted Regular Army unit in U.S. Army history (it was re-designated as the 1st U.S. Cavalry in 1861). His second-in-command was Lt. Colonel Zachary Taylor, who went on to become a Major General and hero in the Mexican War, and the 12th U.S. President.

Dodge commanded the Regiment from 1832-36, which was based in the newly-established post of Fort Leavenworth, KS. In 1836 when Congress established the Territory of Wisconsin, he resigned his Army commission and accepted the appointment of Territorial Governor, an office he served in from 1836-41, then from 1845-48. He was elected as a Territorial Delegate from Wisconsin to the House of Representatives, serving from 1841-45. When Wisconsin was admitted as a State in 1848, he was elected as one of its first two U.S. Senators (along with Isaac Pidgeon Walker), serving from 1848-57. He was offered an appointed as the Territorial Governor of Washington 1857, but declined. In the Senate he served alongside his son, Augustus C. Dodge, who was a Senator from Iowa. They are the only father-son combination to simultaneously serve as U.S. Senators.

When Zachary Taylor ran for President in 1847, Henry Dodge was offered the position of Vice President on the ticket. He declined the honor and it went to Millard Fillmore. Thus, he missed the opportunity to become the 13th President when President Taylor subsequently died in office in July 1850.


Dodge County in Wisconsin and Henry County in Iowa are named for him.

Dodge County in Minnesota is co-named for him and his son.

The Dragoon regiment he commanded still exists today in the U.S. Army as a Mechanized Tank Unit stationed at Fort Hood, TX.

Death and Burial

Colonel Henry Dodge died on 19 June 1867. He is buried at Aspen Grove Cemetery in Burlington, IA.

Honoree ID: 2430   Created by: MHOH




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