“A strong conviction that something must be done is the parent of many bad measures.”
Daniel Webster (1782 – 1852)
A New Hampshire native and graduate of Phillips Exeter Academy and Dartmouth College, Webster, a member of the Whig Party, served New Hampshire in the House of Representatives and Massachusetts in the Senate during the turbulent years leading up to the Civil War. He worked tirelessly to preserve the Union, opposing efforts at secession by New England during the War of 1812, and by the South in the 1840’s and 50’s. Although known best for his fiery and (by today’s standards) flowery oratory in the Senate, he also served as Secretary of State in the Harrison, Tyler, and Fillmore administrations. Among his many accomplishments, it was Webster who filed legislation introducing pre-paid self-adhesive postage stamps in 1847; his portrait has appeared on Postal Service stamps 11 times, more than most presidents.