“Daniel Sullivan Henderson, born April 19, 1849, died November 17, 1921 — lawyer, legislator, publicist, educator and Christian — our beloved father.” These immortal words described the son of Caroline Webb and D.S. Henderson. As valedictorian of his Charleston College class, his remarks regarding the aftermath of the Civil War were characteristically prophetic, yet realistic. At age fifteen, he had enlisted in Culwark’s Calvary. In later years, Henderson’s legal and legislative work would champion the fair treatment of veterans.
Daniel Henderson’s legal career began in the offices of Simon and Siegling of Charleston. Upon admission to the bar in 1872, he located his busy practice in Aiken. He was soon to be considered one of the finest trial lawyers in South Carolina. In 1912, he served as President of the South Carolina Bar.
As a recognized leader in public affairs, Henderson was elected to the South Carolina Senate. He authored a bill to prevent duelling and, in 1895, was instrumental in have a “duelling oath” inserted in the Constitution. Daniel Henderson also advocated the first act that provided for the creation of a Railroad Commission. He took a prominent part in the debates concerning suffrage and education.
What finer words than those of Eugene B. Gary’s when he described Daniel Henderson as “handsome in person, … logical in the unfolding of his argument, … and always the Christian gentleman.”