Daniel Heiner was one of 11 children born to German immigrant parents, Martin Heiner and Adelgunda Dietzel Heiner. Martin and Adelgunda were the first people from the town of Wasungen, Germany, to apply for emigration to the United States in 1845 following the repeal of anti-emigration laws. They moved to Thomastown, Pennsylvania, where they met LDS missionaries and joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
In 1859, Daniel, along with his parents and nine of his siblings, migrated from Pennsylvania to Utah in 1859. Heiner was eight years old at the time of the journey and walked most of the thousand miles to Salt Lake City, Utah. In Utah they faced financial hardship and all held various jobs around Salt Lake City to provide for the family.
The family then moved from Salt Lake City to Morgan County, Utah in December 1863. Here, the family took care of a small lot of sheep. Daniel Heiner helped tend to the family’s sheep crop and wheat and potato fields which had been cleared in the summer of 1864. Later, he got a job working on the Union Pacific Railroad. In 1872, he became the school master for Morgan County, despite having little education. He gained a reputation during this time for becoming an expert deer hunter and marksman, leading several successful hunting parties throughout the county to provide for his family.
He and his two wives, Martha Stephens and Sarach Coulam, farmed and hunted to provide a meager living. In the 1880s, he was arrested for polygamy and faced trial at the Weber County Courthouse in Ogden. He was not convicted due to the 1890 Manifesto from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This manifesto ended the practice of polygamy and halted active prosecutions of polygamists under the Edmunds-Tucker Act.
After this, Heiner created a family ranching business, the Echo Land and Livestock Company, which he maintained throughout his life. In addition, he bought and sold cattle on behalf of the Whitney & Chambers Company of Evanston, Wyoming. He also invested in the Black Hawk coal mine in Emery County. Growing out of his mining and ranching activity was Heiner's interest in banking. This led to the creation of the First National Bank of Morgan of which he was President for 16 years.
Twice, Heiner was elected to be Mayor of Morgan. Heiner was also elected to be Morgan County’s Representative in Utah’s first State Legislature in 1896. In 1898, Governor Heber Manning Wells appointed Heiner as the Road Commissioner for Morgan County, where he built a new road between Mountain Green, Utah, and Devils Canyon, Utah. He was also active in church service locally and served as Stake President for his church from 1900-1924. Heiner died August 8, 1931 in Morgan, Utah, where his historic home still stands.