A Guide to the Philip Dimitt Papers, 1833-1904
Born in Jefferson County, Kentucky, Philip Dimitt (or Dimmitt) (ca. 1801-1841) traveled to Texas around 1823, settling at Bexar, where he served as commissary contractor to the Mexican garrison. After marrying María Luisa Lazo, Dimitt made his fortune establishing a wharf and warehouse on Lavaca Bay. In 1835, he joined George M. Collinsworth's group of revolutionary volunteers en route to capture Goliad. After their victory, Dimitt was elected captain of the stronghold, a post he held until January 10, 1836, when official forces arrived at the garrison. He resigned after the troops demanded the independent command give up its stock and lower its flag of independence. Several weeks later, Dimitt arrived at Bexar to reinforce the Alamo and set to work recruiting volunteers, though he was not present for the mission's siege. After the revolution, he settled in Refugio, becoming a justice and establishing a trading post nearby. In July 1841, Dimitt was captured during a raid by Mexican forces on the store and imprisoned for his role in the Texas Revolution. During an escape attempt by other prisoners during their journey to Mexico City in August, Dimitt took his own life to avoid being killed by the guards.
Roell, Craig H. "Dimmitt, Philip." Handbook of Texas Online. Accessed May 17, 2011.
Photostats of correspondence, estate records, and military records compose the Philip Dimitt Papers, 1833-1904, documenting Dimitt's business and property as well as his leadership in the Texas Revolution. Consisting primarily of letters from Ramon Musquiz, political chief of Bexar discussing land and mercantile matters (1827-1835), correspondence also includes an 1837 missive from Sam Houston concerning army supplies, an 1879 letter from John Sutherland describing Sutherland and Dimitt's capture by Mexican troops, and letters to T. P. Dimitt. Property records, such as a sale notice and inventory, relate to the settlement of Dimitt's estate. Additionally, the collection contains undated ledger pages chronicling the return of troops at Goliad and notes on the history of the Dimitt family.
This collection is open for research use.
Philip Dimitt Papers, 1833-1904, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
Basic processing and cataloging of this collection was supported with funds from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) for the Briscoe Center’s "History Revealed: Bringing Collections to Light" project, 2009-2011.
Detailed Description of the Papers