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This article is from the Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, 6 volumes, edited by William S. Powell. Copyright ©1979-1996 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

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Barringer, Daniel Laurens

by Daniel M. Mcfarland, 1979
See also: Barringer, Paul (Barringer)

1 Oct. 1788–16 Oct. 1852

Daniel Laurens Barringer, lawyer and congressman, was born at Poplar Grove in Cabarrus County. He was the son of John Paul Barringer (1721–1807) and Catherine Blackwelder. His father emigrated from Germany (where the family name was Behringer) to Pennsylvania in 1743 and about 1750 moved on to the Mount Pleasant community on Dutch Buffalo Creek (near the later Concord). John Paul was a militia captain in the Revolution and also served in the North Carolina assembly.

After studying law, Daniel Laurens moved to the state capital to practice. There, in July 1811, he married Nancy (or Ann) White, a granddaughter of Governor Richard Caswell and daughter of William White, North Carolina secretary of state from 1778 to 1811. Barringer represented Wake County in the House of Commons in 1813, 1819, 1820, 1821, and 1822 and was active during this period in the militia affairs of his county.

In 1823, Barringer opposed Willie Person Mangum for a seat in Congress but was defeated, 2,523 to 1,729. Three years later Mangum resigned to accept an appointment to the state court, and Barringer, running against James Mebane, won the seat in a special election by a scant twenty-one votes. The following year he won a full term by narrowly defeating Archibald D. Murphey.

In 1829, claiming to be an independent, he defeated two Jackson partisans, and in 1831 his seat was not contested. By 1833, Barringer's opposition to Jackson began to tell against him, and he was returned by a margin of just sixty-one votes. In 1835, listed with the Whigs, he lost his seat to Dr. William Montgomery, 2,706 to 2,416. While in Congress, from December 1826 to March 1835, he served on the Territories, Expenditures in the Treasury, and Revolutionary Pensions committees, and in the Twenty-second Congress he was chairman of the Select Committee on the Militia.

Soon after returning to Raleigh, Barringer decided to move to Shelbyville, county seat of Bedford County, Tenn. There he continued to practice law and was a Whig leader in campaigns against James K. Polk, governor of Tennessee from 1839 to 1841 and president from 1845 to 1849. Barringer was a member and speaker of the lower house of the Tennessee assembly from 1843 to 1845 and a Whig elector in 1844, supporting Henry Clay against Polk. Barringer died in Shelbyville and was buried in the Willow Mount Cemetery.


Biog. Dir. Am. Cong. (1971).

W. S. Hoffmann, Andrew Jackson and North Carolina Politics (1971).

North Carolina Manual (1913).

Additional Resources:

Daniel Moreau Barringer Papers, 1797-1873 (collection no. 03359). The Southern Historical Collection. Louis Round Wilson Special Collections Library. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.,Daniel_Moreau.html (accessed March 26, 2013).

Barringer, Daniel Laurens 1788-1852 in WorldCat:

Biographical Directory of the United States Congress:

Origin - location: