Charles Dudley Daly
File:Charles Dudley Daly close shot (American Football book).jpg
Biographical details
Born(1880-10-31)October 31, 1880
Roxbury, Massachusetts
DiedFebruary 12, 1959(1959-02-12) (aged 78)
Pacific Grove, California
Playing career
Head coaching record
Accomplishments and honors
2 National (1914, 1916)
College Football Hall of Fame
Inducted in 1951 (profile)

Charles Dudley "Charlie" Daly (October 31, 1880 – February 12, 1959)[1] was an American football player and coach, an author, and served in the United States Army during World War I. He played college football as a quarterback at Harvard University and the United States Military Academy and served as the head football coach at the latter from 1913 to 1916 and 1919 to 1922, compiling a career record of 58–13–3. Daly was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame as a player in 1951.


Daly attended Boston Latin School[2] and Harvard University,[3] where he was a member of ΑΔΦ,[4] the Fly Club,[5] the Hasty Pudding Club[6] and editor of The Harvard Crimson for two years.[7] An all-around athlete, Daly was a member of the Harvard varsity football team from 1898 to 1900.[7] He led the team's offense during its undefeated 1898 and 1899 seasons was the team captain during in 1900.[7][8] He was a Consensus All-American in 1898, 1899, and 1900.[9] He also competed on Harvard's Track and field, where he won the high jump at the 1898 and 1899 Harvard-Yale meets and the broad jump at an 1899 competition against University of Cambridge and Oxford in London.[7] Daly graduated from Harvard in 1901 with an Artium Baccalaureus.[10]

On the eve of the 1900 Harvard-Yale football game, Daly received word that he had been appointed to the United States Military Academy.[7] In 1901, he led Army to an 11 to 5 victory over Navy. In that game he had a 95-yard kickoff return and kicked a field goal and converted one extra point. That same season he kicked a 50-yard field goal in a game against Yale. Army's only loss in 1901 came against Daly old team, Harvard, when Daly's successor as team captain, Robert Kernan, stiff-armed him en route to the game-winning touchdown.[8] Daly was once again named to the All-American team in 1901. Daly graduated from West Point in 1905 and received the rank of 2nd Lieutenant.[11][12]

Daly was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1951.[13]

Boston fire commissionerEdit

In 1906, Daly resigned from the Army and returned to Boston, where he entered the bond brokerage business and served as an assistant football coach at Harvard. On August 18, 1910, Boston Mayor John F. Fitzgerald appointed Daly to the position of Fire Commissioner. He took office on September 16, 1910 following confirmation from the civil service commission.[7] He was removed from office by Fitzgerald on January 26, 1912. According to Fitzgerald, Daly was dismissed because he had neglected to sign paperwork approving a pension for John J. Carney, a former member of the department, before the man died. Daly contended that the reason for his removal was political, stating that "there has never existed any honest or proper reason for the Mayor's desire to remove me from office...He wished promotions, transfers, appointments and contracts awarded in a manner which did not seem to be in the best interests of the city... The grossest administration would have been very acceptable provided the political machine could have milked the department for the countless favors it lives on".[14] Daly opposed special pensions "as a matter of principle" and contended that Carney, who had not yet completed his probationary period, had not died as a result of anything related to his duties with the fire department (Carney contended that his illness was caused by getting soaked while putting out a fire and not being able to change into dry clothes for several hours).[14][15]

Following his dismissal, Daly worked in the motor truck business.[16]

Personal lifeEdit

On November 29, 1912 he married Beatrice Jordan.[16] The couple would have five children. Their three sons graduated from West Point and their two daughters married West Point graduates.[17]

Military careerEdit

Charles Dudley Daly
Birth nameCharles Dudley Daly
Buried atWest Point Cemetery
AllegianceFlag of the United States.svg.png United States
Years of service1905–1906
Rank25px Colonel
Commands held29th Field Artillery Regiment
76th Field Artillery Regiment

In 1912, Daly sought reinstated to the Army through action of the United States Congress.[16] Daly's reinstatement was strongly opposed by Representative James Michael Curley, who attacked Daly for having failed in his prior duties (specifically the matter of John J. Carney) and stated that Daly was only able to get a bill introduced through his Harvard connections. He was also opposed by Representative James Robert Mann, who disagreed with the practice of restoring officers to the Army and also criticized Daly's lack of success following his departure from the Army. Representatives Andrew J. Peters, Augustus P. Gardner Samuel W. McCall spoke on Daly's behalf, as did Representative William F. Murray, who had lost his chance for a West Point appointment to Daly. Army Chief of Staff Leonard Wood also supported Daly's reinstatement. The bill passed shortly before the 62nd United States Congress died and was signed by President William Howard Taft on March 4, 1913.[18]

On April 1, 1913, the War Department ordered Daly to report to Fort Myer for temporary assignment. He then jointed the 5th Field Artillery Regiment at Fort Sill.[19] Following his reinstatement, Daly served in a number of stations of the United States Army Field Artillery Corps, including Fort Sam Houston, Schofield Barracks, and West Point, where he served as head football coach. Upon the United States' entry into World War I, Daly was attached to 338th Field Artillery, 88th Division at Camp Dodge.[20] He was promoted to temporary major on August 5, 1917 and attached to 29th Field Artillery. He was later detailed to School of Fire at Fort Sill as instructor. On June 25, 1918 he was promoted to temporary lieutenant colonel.[21] On October 24, 1918 he was promoted temporary colonel and placed in command of the 29th Field Artillery.[20][21] After the War ended, he was appointed to the War Department General Staff, where he oversaw the transport and troop movements during demobilization.[20] He was demoted to Regular Army grade captain Field Artillery on August 20, 1919 and detailed to the U.S. Military Academy as instructor. He promoted to major in 1920 and by 1921 was a Captain.[21] From 1924 to 1925, Daly commanded the 76th Field Artillery Regiment at the Presidio of Monterey.[22] In 1925 he returned to Harvard as an instructor at the school's department of military sciences and assistant football coach.[20] In October 1926 he was transferred to Honolulu.[23] From 1928 to 1934 he was an Assistant Professor of Military Science and Tactics at West Point.[24] Daly spent his final years with the Army stationed in Washington D.C. at the Army War College and the War Department.[25][13]

On February 8, 1932, Daly suffered a heart attack at his desk at the United States Department of War in Washington.[20] He retired from the Army on July 31, 1933 due to disability caused by heart disease. He retired with the rank of Colonel.[25]


Daly was the head football coach at West Point from 1913 to 1916 and again from 1919 to 1922. Known as the "Godfather of West Point Football", he was coach to Dwight Eisenhower, Omar Bradley, Joseph Stilwell, Matthew Ridgway, James Van Fleet, George S. Patton and other American military luminaries of the 20th century.[2][26] In 1921 he founded the American Football Coaches Association.[13] He retired from coaching in 1925 after serving one season as an assistant coach at Harvard while on military assignment there.[27]

Head coaching recordEdit

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
Army Cadets (Independent) (1913–1916)
1913 Army 8–1
1914 Army 9–0
1915 Army 5–3–1
1916 Army 9–0
Army Cadets (Independent) (1919–1922)
1919 Army 6–3
1920 Army 7–2
1921 Army 6–4
1922 Army 8–0–2
Army: 58–13–3
Total: 58–13–3
      National championship         Conference title         Conference division title
Indicates BCS bowl, Bowl Alliance or Bowl Coalition game.


File:Daly Field, West Point, NY.JPG

Following his retirement, Daly moved to Pacific Grove, California. He died on February 12, 1959 at his home. He was survived by his wife and five children.[13] His memorial service was held at the Post Chapel at the Presidio of Monterey and he was interred at the West Point Cemetery.[17]

In 1963, the football practice field at West Point was named in Daly's honor.

See alsoEdit



  1. Edmund Emmet Daly (1937). History of the O'Dalys; the story of the ancient Irish sept; the race of Dalach of Corca Adaimh. New Haven, Conn.: Tuttle, Morehouse and Taylor. pp. 479. OCLC 4286380..
  2. 2.0 2.1 Blaik, Earl Henry (1960). You Have to Pay the Price. New York: New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston. pp. 40. OCLC 492493.,M1..
  3. Harvard Alumni Directory. Boston: Harvard Alumni Association. 1919.
  4. Alpha Delta Phi (1899). Catalogue of the Alpha Delta Phi Society. New York: Executive Council of the Alpha Delta Phi Fraternity.
  5. Harvard University (1916). Catalogue of the Fly Club of Harvard University. Cambridge: printed for the Club..
  6. Hasty Pudding Club (1926). The First Catalogue of the Hasty Pudding Institute of 1770. OCLC 23111551..
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 "Daly Takes Reins Today". The Boston Daily Globe. September 16, 1910.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Nason, Jerry (February 15, 1959). "Coached Ike at West Point: Fabled Col Daly One of Greatest; He Weighed 140". The Boston Daily Globe.
  9. "Football Award Winners". National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). 2016. p. 6. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
  10. Mead, Frederick Sumner (1921). Harvard's Military Record in the World War. Boston: Harvard Alumni Association. pp. 242. OCLC 47241947.,M1..
  11. "Eleven Former Athletes Will Enter Army Sports Hall of Fame in September". West 2006-09-09. Retrieved 2009-05-18.
  12. Edwards, William Hanford (1916). Football days; memories of the game and of the men behind the ball. New York: Moffat, Yard and Company. pp. 215. ISBN 1-60303-045-X. OCLC 2047234.,M1.
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 "Col. C.D. Daly, 78, Football Coach". The New York Times. February 13, 1959.
  14. 14.0 14.1 "Mayor Removes Daly, Cole For Fire Head". The Boston Daily Globe. January 27, 1912.
  15. "Daly Opposed Special Pensions". The Boston Daily Globe. January 30, 1912.
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 "Daly Wants His Army Berth Back". The Boston Daily Globe. December 13, 1912.
  17. 17.0 17.1 Ridley, C.S.. "Charles D. Daly 1905". West Point Association of Graduates (NCAA). Retrieved January 17, 2018.
  18. Robinson, Norborne (March 5, 1913). "Daly Restored To The Army". The Boston Daily Globe.
  19. "To Join Field Artillery.". The Boston Daily Globe. April 2, 1913.
  20. 20.0 20.1 20.2 20.3 20.4 "Maj Daly Has Heart Attack". The Boston Daily Globe. February 19, 1932.
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 Fisher, MSG Danny L. "Biography - COL Charles Dudley Daly". Archived from the original on 2004-08-15. Retrieved 2008-04-02. (, archived by WebCite at )
  22. "Weeks Transfers Daly to Harvard". The New York Times. January 14, 1925.
  23. "Honolulu Post For Daly". The Boston Daily Globe. September 28, 1926.
  24. Harvard University (1937). Historical Register of Harvard University, 1636-1936. Cambridge: Harvard University. pp. 175. OCLC 580949.
  25. 25.0 25.1 "Maj C.D. Daly To Retire July 21". The Boston Daily Globe. July 12, 1933.
  26. Ford, Paul T. (1996). The Descendants of Crohan Daly in America: A Narrative Genealogy. Amherst, MA: P.T. Ford. OCLC 37277737..
  27. "Arnold Horween Named Head Coach at Harvard". The Boston Daily Globe. March 11, 1926.

External linksEdit

Preceded by
Samuel D. Parker
Boston Fire Commissioner
September 16, 1910–January 26, 1912
Succeeded by
Charles H. Cole

Template:Harvard Crimson quarterback navbox Template:Army Black Knights quarterback navbox

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.