The Daniel Webster Memorial

Daniel Webster was a U.S. statesman who had a lengthy career in Congress and the Federal government, one which would be absolutely impossible in today’s political climate.  He was elected and served as both a Congressman and Senator from three different political parties representing two different states.  He was also appointed Secretary of State by three separate Presidents from two different political parties.

He was originally elected in 1813 as a Federalist from New Hampshire to the Thirteenth, and then the Fourteenth Congresses.  After not running for election, he moved to Massachusetts to practice law.  Years later, he again ran for Congress and was elected to represent Massachusetts to the Eighteenth, Nineteenth, and Twentieth Congresses.

He the ran as a member of the Adams Party, later referred to as Anti-Jacksonian, and was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1827.  He was reelected to the Senate as a Whig in 1833 and 1839, and served until his resignation, effective in 1841.

Despite an unsuccessful run as the Whig candidate for President in 1836, as a leader of his party, he was one of the nation’s most prominent conservatives of his time.  He was appointed Secretary of State by President William Henry Harrison and again by President John Tyler.  Again elected as a Whig to the U.S. Senate from 1845 to 1850, he resigned to again be  appointed Secretary of State by President Millard Fillmore, a position in which he served until his death in 1852.

Among the many memorials in D.C. is one to honor Webster.  The statue is located near Webster’s former home at 1603 Massachusetts Avenue in northwest D.C., beside Scott Circle at the intersection of Massachusetts Avenue and Rhode Island Avenue (MAP).

The Daniel Webster Memorial consists of a 12-foot bronze statue of Webster on an 18-foot granite pedestal in a sober classical style.  The statue of Webster was given to the United States government by Stilson Hutchins, founder of the Washington Post and, like Webster, a fellow native of New Hampshire.  An Act of Congress on July 1, 1898 authorized its erection on public grounds and appropriated $4,000 for a pedestal. The memorial was dedicated on January 19, 1900.  On October 12, 2007, the Daniel Webster Memorial was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.



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