Daniel Webster

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Daniel Webster
Daguerreotype of Senator Webster circa 1847
14th United States Secretary of State
In office
March 6, 1841 – May 8, 1843
President William Henry Harrison
John Tyler
Preceded by John Forsyth
Succeeded by Abel P. Upshur
19th United States Secretary of State
In office
July 23, 1850 – October 24, 1852
President Millard Fillmore
Preceded by John M. Clayton
Succeeded by Edward Everett
United States Senator from Massachusetts
In office
June 8, 1827 – February 22, 1841
Preceded by Elijah H. Mills
Succeeded by Rufus Choate
In office
March 4, 1845 – July 22, 1850
Preceded by Rufus Choate
Succeeded by Robert C. Winthrop
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Massachusetts's 1st district
In office
March 4, 1823 – May 30, 1827
Preceded by Benjamin Gorham
Succeeded by Benjamin Gorham
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Hampshire's At-large district
In office
March 4, 1813 – March 3, 1817
Preceded by George Sullivan
Succeeded by Arthur Livermore
Personal details
Born January 18, 1782(1782-01-18)
Salisbury, New Hampshire
Died October 24, 1852(1852-10-24) (aged 70)
Marshfield, Massachusetts
Political party Federalist
National Republican
Whig
Spouse(s) Grace Fletcher Webster
Caroline LeRoy Webster
Alma mater Dartmouth College
Profession Politician, Lawyer
Religion Unitarian[1]
Signature

Daniel Webster (January 18, 1782 – October 24, 1852) was an important American statesman. He first became famous because of his defense of New England shipping interests. In his life, he became more and more nationalistic, and convinced many people to become nationalists too. This made Webster one of the most famous orators and powerful Whig leaders of the Second Party System. Webster did not like slavery, but he thought it was more important for the Union (the United States) to stay together than anything else.

Webster became the northern member of a group known as the "Great Triumvirate". They included his colleagues Henry Clay from the west and John C. Calhoun from the south. His "Reply to Hayne" in 1830 was generally seen as "the most eloquent (powerful, fluent, well-spoken) speech ever delivered in Congress."[2] Webster tried to keep the nation from civil war, and make them have a firm peace. His efforts did not succeed, but he was still respected for them. He was officially named by the U.S. Senate in 1957 as one of its five best members.[3]

Early life[change | edit source]

Daniel was born on January 18, 1782. His parents were Ebenezer and Abigail Webster (née Eastman) in Salisbury, New Hampshire, now part of the city of Franklin. He and his nine siblings grew up on his parents' farm. Daniel Webster's great-great-grandfather was Thomas Webster[4] (1631–1715). Thomas Webster was born in Ormesby St. Margaret, Norfolk, England and settled in New Hampshire. As Daniel was a "sickly (unhealthy) child", his family often let him have whatever he wanted. They also exempted (gave freedom from duty) him from working on the farm.[5]

References[change | edit source]

  1. Cooke, George (1902). Unitarianism in America. Kessinger Publishing. p. 271. ISBN 1419192108. http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=NZt97oFb4EsC&pg=PA271&dq=%22daniel+webster%22+%22unitarian+universalism%22&as_brr=3.
  2. Allan Nevins, Ordeal of the Union" (1947) 1:288
  3. "U.S. Senate: Art & History Home > People > Senators > The "Famous Five" Now the "Famous Nine"". senate.gov. http://www.senate.gov/artandhistory/history/common/briefing/Famous_Five_Seven.htm. Retrieved 28 May 2010.
  4. "Family History and Genealogy Records". FamilySearch.org. http://www.familysearch.org/eng/default.asp. Retrieved 2009-08-05.
  5. "Daniel Webster." American Eras, Volume 5: The Reform Era and Eastern U.S. Development, 1815–1850. Gale Research, 1998. Student Resource Center. Thomson Gale. June 16, 2006.

Other websites[change | edit source]

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United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
George Sullivan
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Hampshire's At-large congressional district

1813–1817
Succeeded by
Arthur Livermore
Preceded by
Benjamin Gorham
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Massachusetts's 1st congressional district

1823–1827
Succeeded by
Benjamin Gorham
United States Senate
Preceded by
Elijah Mills
United States Senator (Class 1) from Massachusetts
1827–1841
Served alongside: Nathaniel Silsbee, John Davis
Succeeded by
Rufus Choate
Preceded by
Rufus Choate
United States Senator (Class 1) from Massachusetts
1845–1850
Served alongside: John Davis
Succeeded by
Robert Winthrop
Political offices
Preceded by
Samuel Smith
Chairperson of the Senate Committee on Finance
1833–1836
Succeeded by
Silas Wright
Preceded by
John Forsyth
U.S. Secretary of State
Served under: William Henry Harrison, John Tyler

1841–1843
Succeeded by
Abel Upshur
Preceded by
John Clayton
U.S. Secretary of State
Served under: Millard Fillmore

1850–1852
Succeeded by
Edward Everett