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Daniel Warfield


A drummer boy in the Civil War, Mr. Daniel Warfield is buried in Ellsworth Cemetery. 

Born in Frederick, Maryland on October 15, 1848, Mr. Daniel Warfield was the son of Oscar and Catherine (Johnson) Warfield. They may have been enslaved earlier, as they have not been found in the 1840 Census. Their enslavers may have been one of three large Warfield families in the area, all of whom enslaved about a dozen people. 

By 1850, they were free, and Daniel was living with both parents and an older sister (Lydia), still in Frederick. In 1860, Daniel is shown with another five brothers and sisters.

He went north to Philadelphia and enlisted in the United States Army on 12 January 1864. He used an alias, Daniel Poker (sometimes spelled Pocher). Because he was only about 17 years old, Mr. Warfield (aka Poker) became a drummer boy. Or perhaps it was his height, since he recorded as being 4 feet, 11 inches tall. He served in Company “C” of the 25th US Colored Troops. The Regiment participated in the defense of New Orleans and then was stationed in Pensacola, Florida. They mustered out, in December of 1865.

At that time, Mr. Warfield returned to Maryland. He married Ms. Margaret Jones on June 7th, 1874. They had two children, Adam and Ernest. Mr. Warfield continued living and working in the area of Westminster, most often as a day laborer. In 1890, he filed for his soldier’s pension. On the pension paperwork, both his real name and his alias (Poker) are recorded. 

After 1900, he opened his own barbershop in Westminster. He worked there for many years, and was joined there by his son, Ernest. Mr. Warfield died in June of 1918 of double pneumonia, likely as a result of the influenza pandemic. He was 68 years old. 

His wife, Maggie, and son, Ernest, published the following poem in 1919, in remembrance of him.


In Memoriam
In sad but loving remembrance of
dear husband, and our father,
Daniel P. Warfield, who departed this
one year ago, June 18th, 1918. 

The month of June once more is here,
To us the saddest of all the year,
Because it took from us away
The loved one we loved so dearly,
one year ago. 

Death has robbed me to my husband
Whom I loved and cherished dear,
It was husband, yes, dear husband,
Can we help but shed a tear?

Rest on dear father thy labors are o’er,
Thy willing hands will toil no more;
A faithful father both true and kind,
A truer father we could not find. 

Margaret A. and son, Ernest. 

Mr. Daniel Warfield is buried in Ellsworth Cemetery, outside Westminster, Maryland. 

Maryland State Archives