Daniel A. McDougal
Daniel A. McDougal was born on January 14, 1865 in Wayland Springs,
Tennessee. McDougal spent a year at Vanderbilt University and then studied
law under the tutelage of his brother-in-law. He set up a law practice
in Purdy, Tennessee and became active in politics. McDougal became interested
in land development and the quest for oil in the western territories.
He relocated his family to the town of Sapulpa, Oklahoma where he profited
greatly from the oil industry. He entered local politics, becoming mayor
of Sapulpa, and later a state legislator. McDougal crusaded for prohibition
and supported women's suffrage in Oklahoma. During the administration
of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, McDougal assisted the legal advisor for
the U. S. State Department. During the land boom of the early 1920s,
McDougal came to Florida with his daughter, Mary McDougal Axelson. Here
he team up with her future husband, Ivar Axelson, and began amassing
land and oil rights in the Everglades. McDougal made his final permanent
home in Coral Gables and spent his last years fighting the expansion
of the Everglades National Park and the retention of his oil rights.
Daniel A. McDougal died in Coral Gables in 1955.
Biography prepared by Ruthanne Vogel, University
Excerpt of letter
from Daniel McDougal to Charles Walker, October 19, 1925. From Axelson
Papers, University of Miami.
"While I have done well
and made big profits on my investments in Florida, all that I have is
in land and paper. I have never received one cent out of the profits
of the sale of the lands from our big tract. We have sold about three
and one-half million dollars' worth of land out of the big tract, but
most of it was sold for 25% cash payment and some of it was for much
less cash, and out of the cash payment, we paid a commission of 5% and
had nearly a million dollars' of obligations in the way of road building
expenses, floating indebtedness and bonded indebtedness...
We still have about five
million dollars of unsold land in the big tract. I never had more property
nor less cash nor more pressing obligations than I have right now."
of Judge McDougal wearing mosquito netting, 1919.
of University of Miami Libraries, University