Daniel was born in Stafford County, Virginia on April 24, 1784. With the exception of one year at Princeton, Daniel’s was educated exclusively by tutors. Daniel read law under Edmund Randolph, who had been the Secretary of State and Attorney General under President Washington. In 1808 Daniel was admitted to the Virginia bar. In 1809 he was elected to the Virginia State Legislature. In 1818 Daniel while serving as member of the Virginia Privy Council was elected as Lieutenant Governor of Virginia, a post he held for 17 years. In 1836 Daniel’s was appointed to United States District Court for Eastern Virginia. In 1841 Daniel’s was nominated to the Supreme Court by President Van Buren. He served on the court for 18 years. Daniel died in 1860.