The village of Dawson is near an old Indian trail that ran from Clear Lake to Buffalo Hart. The village itself was incorporated in 1883, two years after the Wabash Coal & Mining Co. opened a mine shaft in the area. Mining continued until at least 1924, when the Dawson Coal Mining Co. closed.
Named: John Dawson was one of the “Long Nine” (along with Abraham Lincoln) who persuaded the General Assembly to move the state capital to Springfield.
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