William Daniel was born on Deals Island, Somerset County, Maryland, January 24, 1826, and graduated from Dickinson College in 1848. He was admitted to the practice of law in 1851 in his native county, and pursued the same there till 1858, when he removed to Baltimore, where he has continued to practice his profession to the present time. He was elected twice to represent his native county in the House of Delegates and once in the Senate of the Maryland legislature, and after his removal to Baltimore (in 1863) was elected a member of the State constitutional convention from Baltimore, taking a prominent part therein in the measures which led to the emancipation of the slaves. He professed conversion and united with the Methodist Episcopal Church in the last year of his collegiate life. He has held many official positions in the church.
Mr. Daniel was first a Whig, then a Republican, and lastly a Prohibitionist. He took a prominent part in the agitation for a State prohibitory law in the Maryland legislature upon his first entrance to that body, and in 1858, while a member of the Senate, had enacted a stringent prohibitory law for the district in which he was born and "raised," and which was the first law of the kind ever enacted in the State. This law is still on the statute book. He aided materially in the formation of the Maryland State Temperance Alliance in 1872; became its first president and was annually elected as such for 12 years, when he declined to serve longer. Upon ceasing to be the president of the alliance, he was at once elected State chairman of the Prohibition Party, and continued in this position for 3 years. While president and chairman of these 2 associations he was both an active worker at home and an earnest advocate of the cause on the platform throughout the State, as well as before legislative committees and legislative assemblies, etc.; drafted many and most of the Local Option and prohibitory laws passed by the legislature; defended them in the courts, and prosecuted violators of them. Mainly through his persistent efforts while president of the Alliance, nearly half of the counties of the State adopted local Prohibition, in nearly all of which the same continues to the present time. In 1884 he became the candidate of the Prohibition Party for the Vice-Presidency, having ex-Governor St. John as his colleague on the ticket.
In 1889 he was mainly instrumental in organizing a Prohibition camp-meeting association which subsequently purchased very desirable grounds, about 20 miles from Baltimore, erecting upon them a tabernacle, where an annual Prohibition camp is held, which has become a great educational Prohibition center. It is known as the Glyndon Park Camp-Grounds. He has been its first and only president from its organization to the present time.
[William Daniel died in 1897.]
-- Data from An Album of Representative Prohibitionists (1895).