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John W. Daniel

John Warwick Daniel (September 5, 1842 – June 29, 1910) was an American lawyer, author, and Democratic politician from Lynchburg, Virginia. He served in the Virginia House of Delegates and represented Virginia in both the U.S. House and then five terms in the Senate. Daniel was known as the Lame Lion of Lynchburg because he was seriously wounded at the Battle of the Wilderness while serving as a major in the Confederate Army.


John W. Daniel was born in Lynchburg, Virginia, and attended private schools, Lynchburg College, and Dr. Gessner Harrison’s University School. During the American Civil War, he served in the Confederate Army from 1861–64, attaining the rank of major. He was an important staff officer for Major General Jubal A. Early in several campaigns, including Gettysburg. Daniel was permanently disabled in the Battle of the Wilderness in May 1864 and resigned his commission.

Daniel studied law at the University of Virginia at Charlottesville and was admitted to the bar in 1866. He established his practice at Lynchburg. Despite being crippled from his war injury, he entered politics and was a member of the House of Delegates from 1869–72. Daniel was elected to the state senate in 1876 and served until 1881, when he was an unsuccessful candidate for Governor of Virginia. In 1884, he was elected as a Democrat to the Forty-ninth Congress and served from March 4, 1885 – March 3, 1887.

Daniel was subsequently elected as a Democrat to the United States Senate. He was reelected in 1891, 1897, 1904, and 1910, and served from March 4, 1887, until his death.

During his tenure, he served as chairman, Committee on Revision of the Laws of the United States (Fifty-third Congress). He was also a member of several committees, including the Committee on Corporations Organized in the District of Columbia (Fifty-fifth Congress), the Committee on Public Health and National Quarantine (Sixtieth Congress), and the Committee on Private Land Claims (Sixty-first Congress).

Daniel staunchly supported an American intervention into Cuba during the 1890s and often spoke at length on Spanish cruelties.

Always interested in veterans affairs, Senator Daniel was heavily involved in the initial planning of the Virginia Memorial on the Gettysburg Battlefield.

Daniel was a delegate to the Virginia Constitutional Convention of 1901.

Daniel died in Lynchburg and was buried there in the Spring Hill Cemetery. A large bronze statue of him is near the intersection of Park Avenue and 9th Street in Lynchburg. His father's home, Point of Honor, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1970 and is currently operated as a house museum by the City of Lynchburg. His birthplace, the John Marshall Warwick House, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1996.



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