Dawson is a city in and the county seat of Terrell County, Georgia, United States. The population was 4,557 at the 2010 census. Incorporated on December 22, 1857, the city is named for Senator William Crosby Dawson.
Dawson is part of the Albany, Georgia Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Dawson was founded in 1856 as seat of the newly formed Terrell County. It was incorporated as a town in 1857 and as a city in 1872. Terrell was an important site in the 1960s, when the county in which it is located was labeled "Terrible Terrell" by the SNCC. Jackie Robinson helped raise money to rebuild three black churches that were burned in the area.
In 1976, five African-American youths were charged with the murder of a white customer in a roadside convenience store. The crime and pretrial proceedings garnered national attention. The five young men, one of whom was a juvenile, charged in the case were known as "The Dawson Five". The court dropped the charges against the group of five; Roosevelt Watson, Henderson Watson, J.D. Davenport, Johnnie B. Jackson, and George Poor, when it found evidence of police misconduct, including coerced confessions, intimidation and improper identification procedures.
Dawson is located in Southwest Georgia along U.S. Route 82 and Georgia State Route 520 (Columbus Highway), which leads southeast 8 mi (13 km) to Sasser and northwest 9 mi (14 km) to Parrott.