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DANIEL, CHARLES DAVIS

DANIEL, CHARLES DAVIS (1856–1939). Charles Davis Daniel, Baptist missionary, was born in Monroe County, Alabama, on March 17, 1856. At the end of the Civil War his father took the family to Brazil. During their seven-year stay Daniel was educated by his mother and learned to speak Portuguese fluently. In 1872 he and his family moved to Navarro County, Texas. His father died three years later, and Daniel assumed responsibility as head of the household. In the summer of 1877 he joined the Bethesda Baptist Church of the Richland Association. He desired to teach but hesitated because of his lack of formal education and his responsibilities at home. He committed himself in 1880 to becoming a preacher and was licensed on July 31, 1881. In the fall of that year he entered Baylor University with the financial assistance of Baylor president R. C. Burleson. He studied Latin, Greek, and Spanish, in addition to the standard curriculum. While at Baylor Daniel met his future wife, Lena Kirk, and gained ministerial experience at the Dawson and Lorena Baptist churches. On November 4, 1883, he was ordained. He graduated from Baylor in June 1885 and was married in San Antonio in November.

After graduating he was appointed by the Foreign Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention as a missionary to Brazil. There he pastored several Baptist churches and edited the Brazilian Baptist, a newspaper. Two of his children were born during that time. He remained in Brazil until 1889, when his failing health necessitated his move back to the United States. For the next ten years he served churches in San Antonio and Mineola and did mission work among Mexican Americans. At the close of the Spanish-American War and the granting of Cuban independence by Spain in 1898, Daniel was appointed by the Home Mission Board to work as a missionary in Cuba. On the island he reorganized and revitalized Baptist work, which had deteriorated during the war. The four western provinces of Cuba were under his authority, including the city of Havana. Daniel remained in Cuba through 1905, when he returned to the United States due to ill health.

From 1906 to 1922 he was active in mission work among Hispanics in Texas. He spent the first few of these years in Gonzales and El Paso and later traveled around the state. In 1925 he returned to his former pastorate in Lorena, where he remained pastor as long as his health allowed. He was an active Mason for more than fifty years. On September 12, 1939, Daniel died in Waco after a long illness. He was survived by his wife, five children, three brothers, and nine grandchildren.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Encyclopedia of Southern Baptists (4 vols., Nashville: Broadman, 1958–82).

Dale Wood Peterson

Citation

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Dale Wood Peterson, "DANIEL, CHARLES DAVIS," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fda70), accessed August 01, 2014. Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.