Bio Sketch: John H. Howard (1813-1878), lawyer in Dayton, Ohio

John H. Howard was born October 5, 1813, in Belmont County, Ohio, the son of Horton Howard (1770-1833) and his third wife Hannah Hastings (1774-1833).[1]

John Howard (object NCR.1998.L0010.070 from Dayton History, used with permission)

John Howard (object # NCR.1998.L0010.070 from Dayton History. Used with permission.)

.

John H. Howard's signature, 1832

John H. Howard’s signature, 1832 (Dayton Metro Library, FPW, Box 36, Folder 7)

Beginning in 1832, John attended Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio. He first attended the grammar school for the year 1832-1833.[2] He entered the sophomore college class in 1834. While at Kenyon, he was a member of the prominent literary society, the Philomathesian Society. John graduated from Kenyon College with an A.B. degree in 1837.[3]

Letter from John to his sister Sarah, 18 Sept. 1833, discussing school at Gambier

Letter from John to his sister Sarah and brother-in-law Samuel Forrer, 18 Sept. 1833, discussing school at Gambier (Dayton Metro Library, FPW, Box 36, Folder 8)

John moved to Dayton, Ohio, in 1839, and read law in the office of Odlin & Schenck. He was admitted to the bar in 1840. John was a lawyer in Dayton for nearly 40 years, several of which he practiced with Daniel A. Haynes in the firm Haynes & Howard, one of the best firms in the state. In later years, he practiced law with his son William, first as John Howard & Son, then as Howard & Howard.[4]

John served as mayor of Dayton from 1848-1854. In the 1876 election, John ran as a Republican candidate for U.S. Congress from Ohio’s 4th district, losing by less than 100 votes to the Democratic candidate John McMahon.[5]

John Howard contested the 1876 Congressional election but still lost after a re-count (Dayton Journal, 10 Nov. 1876)

John Howard contested the 1876 Congressional election but still lost after a re-count (Dayton Journal, 10 Nov. 1876)

On June 21, 1841, in Hamilton County, Ohio, John married Ann E. Loury, daughter of Fielding Loury, Sr. Ann was born about 1818 or 1819 in Troy, Ohio.[6]

John H. Howard died on May 8, 1878, in Dayton, Ohio. His wife Ann died September 14, 1886. They are both buried in Woodland Cemetery in Dayton, Ohio.[7]

John Howard (back row, center) and family, Woodland Cemetery, Section 66

John Howard (back row, center) and family, Woodland Cemetery, Section 66 (Photo by the author, 29 Oct. 2011)

John and Ann had at least seven children, although only two of their children lived to adulthood:

  1. William Crane Howard (1842-1900);
  2. Eliza P. Howard (about 1844-1884);
  3. Ann Howard (about 1845-1853);
  4. Alice Howard (1847-1848);
  5. Horton Howard (1850-1853);
  6. Mary Howard (about 1850-1853); and
  7. John Howard (1854-1860).

William Crane Howard was born April 24, 1842, in Dayton, Ohio. From August 1862 until April 1863, William served as a second lieutenant in the 17th Independent Battery Ohio Volunteer Light Artillery. [For more on William’s Civil War service, see “A Tale of Two Howards,” especially Part 5, here on my blog.] He studied law with his father, and the two practiced law together from 1864 until John’s death in 1878. On December 5, 1865, in Montgomery County, Ohio, William married Anna Keifer (about 1843-1879). They had four children: Eliza K. Howard, Ann E. Howard, Louise Howard, and John H. Howard. Shortly after the death of his wife in 1879, William moved, with his children and his widowed mother, to the Cincinnati area, where he was a U.S. Clerk. He later moved to the San Francisco, California, area, where he died October 30, 1900. William was buried next to his parents and siblings in Woodland Cemetery in Dayton, Ohio.[8]

Eliza P. Howard was born about 1844 in Dayton, Ohio. On May 18, 1871, Eliza married Samuel Watts Davies (1838-1919), son of Edward Watts Davies and Mary Ann Peirce. They had three children: Mary D. Davies, Edward Watts Davies, and John Howard Davies. Eliza P. (Howard) Davies died May 9, 1884, and was buried in Woodland Cemetery in Dayton.[9]

*****

This biographical sketch was originally written by Lisa P. Rickey in April 2012 for the Forrer-Peirce-Wood Collection (MS-018) finding aid at the Dayton Metro Library, 215 E. Third St., Dayton, Ohio, 45402; phone (937) 496-8654.

Additional information about the sketch’s subject can be found in that collection. For more information about the manuscript collection’s contents, please see the original PDF finding aid available in the Local History Room of the Dayton Metro Library, the OhioLINK EAD Repository entry, or the WorldCat record.

Please contact the Dayton Metro Library or this blog’s author for more information about how to access the original finding aid or the manuscript collection.


[1] Howard Genealogical Information, FPW, 36:20; John Howard to his family, [several letters], 36:7-8. John signed a few of his letters “John H. Howard.”

[2] Several letters from the time period of the August 1833 cholera outbreak are addressed to John at Gambier, Ohio. Also, according to Kenyon College historian Tom Stamp, it was not unusual for a young man of John’s age (19 or 20) to enter the grammar school at Kenyon, during that time period.

[3] Personal correspondence from Lydia Shahan, special collections assistant, Greenslade Special Collections & Archives, Kenyon College, Gambier, Ohio, 19 Mar. 2012. John Edgar, in Pioneer Life in Dayton and Vicinity (1896), p. 113, incorrectly states that John graduated in 1839.

[4] Edgar, Pioneer Life in Dayton, 113; David C. Greer, Sluff of History’s Boot Soles: An Anecdotal History of Dayton’s Bench and Bar (Wilmington, OH: Orange Frazer Press, 1996), 75; Dayton City Directories.

[5] “Mayors of Dayton” List, Dayton Metro Library Local History Question & Answer File; Greer, Sluff of History’s Boot Soles, 75; “How Soldiers Voted in Ohio: Why a Democrat was Elected to Congress from a Republican District,” 21 Oct. 1876, Cincinnati Enquirer, ProQuest Historical Newspapers: The Cincinnati Enquirer, 1841-1922; Dayton Journal, Aug.-Oct. 1876 [several articles].

[6] Ohio, County Marriages, 1790-1950 (database), FamilySearch, accessed 25 Jan. 2012, http://www.familysearch.org; Edgar, Pioneer Life in Dayton, 112-113; U.S. Federal Census, 1860; Woodland Cemetery & Arboretum Interment Database, accessed 26 Oct. 2011, http://www.woodlandcemetery.org.

[7] Obituaries of John Howard, 10 May 1878 and 11 May 1878, Dayton Daily Journal; obituary of Ann E. Howard, 15 Sept. 1886, Dayton Daily Journal; Woodland Cemetery & Arboretum Interment Database, accessed 26 Oct. 2011, http://www.woodlandcemetery.org. John and Ann Howard are buried in Section 66, Lot 125.

[8] Official Roster of the Soldiers of the State of Ohio in the War of the Rebellion, 1861-1866, vol. X (Akron: Werner Co., 1889), 583; Civil War Draft Registration Records, 1863-1865 (database), Ancestry Library Edition; Dayton City Directories; U.S. Federal Census, 1850-1900; Great Registers of California, 1866-1898 (database), Ancestry Library Edition; Obituary of William C. Howard, [1900], in James O. Oliver scrapbook, Vol. II, Part 2, page 180, Montgomery County Historical Society Collection, Dayton Metro Library, Dayton, Ohio; Woodland Cemetery & Arboretum Interment Database, accessed 26 Oct. 2011, http://www.woodlandcemetery.org. William is buried in Section 66, Lot 127.

[9] U.S. Federal Census, 1850-1880; Augustus W. Drury, History of the City of Dayton and Montgomery County, Ohio (Chicago: S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1909), 2:84-87; Ohio Marriages, 1800-1958 (database), FamilySearch, accessed 12 Mar. 2012, http://www.familysearch.org; Ohio Births & Christenings Index, 1800-1962 (database), Ancestry Library Edition; Woodland Cemetery & Arboretum Interment Database, accessed 26 Oct. 2011, http://www.woodlandcemetery.org. Eliza is buried in Section 66, Lot 127; her husband was later buried beside her.

One response to “Bio Sketch: John H. Howard (1813-1878), lawyer in Dayton, Ohio

  1. Pingback: Bio Sketch: Horton Howard (1770-1833), Quaker leader, Ohio pioneer, federal land agent, doctor, & cholera victim | Glancing Backwards

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