History of Lycoming County, Pennsylvania, 1887

Howard Family - WILLIAM HOWARD Biography

William Howard, who was a member of the firm of Howard & Perley, lumber manufacturers, was one of the pioneer lumbermen of Williamsport, Pennsylvania, having been for many years actively and prominently identified with the lumber interests in this section of the state, dividing his time between Williamsport, Lycoming county, and Cameron county. He was born in Yorkshire, England, August 13, 1831, a son of John and Hannah (Lockwood) Howard, who lived and died in their native land, England.

William Howard received an excellent education in the schools of England, and upon the completion of his studies served an apprenticeship at the trade of stonemason. Upon his arrival in the United States, in 1854, he located in Reading, Pennsylvania, and for a short period of time was employed by the Lebanon Valley Railroad Company in building a bridge near the city of Reading. In August, 1854, he took tip his residence in Williamsport, and for a time worked on the dam on the Susquehanna river near that city. His next employment was with the Water Mill Company, with whom he remained a few years, and in 1857 he went into the lumber woods and engaged in that business. Later he organized the firm of C. B. & W. Howard, their business being that of log stockers. In 1863 he purchased land in Cameron county, and operated there until 1887. In 1866 he entered into partnership with John R. Cook & Company, purchased the saw mill which was operated by Howard & Perley, and engaged in the manufacture of lumber. Later he became a member of the firm of Sloanker, Howard & Company, which was merged into that of Howard, Perley & Howard, and finally became Howard & Perley.

Mr. Howard was one of the organizers and was a stockholder and director in the First National Bank of Emporium. He was one of the organizers of the Emporium Water Company, and a director in that in stitution. He was also a stockholder and director in the Lycoming Rubber Company, of which he was one of the organizers, and he was an active factor in securing the removal of the Demorest Sewing Machine Works to Williamsport, giving liberally of his means to the furtherance of that project. He was also a stockholder in the West Branch National Bank. While a resident of Emporium Mr. Howard served in the capacity of burgess of that borough for two years, was a member ber of the borough council for several years, served two terms as county commissioner of Cameron county, and after removing to Williamsport served two years in the common council. Mr. Howard was a prominent Mason, and was connected with the lodge, chapter, commandery and consistory. At a stated meeting and anniversary of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite of Free Masons of the Valley of Williamsport held Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, January 27, 28, 29, 1904, a statue of William Howard was unveiled. The statue is of the finest Carrara marble, of heroic size, and very faithfully produces the features and expression of its subject. It presents Mr. Howard in his official robes as grand treasurer, seated in a chair, and the whole rests on a large block of grey granite, four feet square. It is placed in a conspicuous spot in the Howard Memorial Hall, the erection of which magnificent cathedral was made possible through the munificence of Mr. Howard, and the placing of the statue therein was determined upon by Scottish Rite Masons of the Valley of Williamsport as a fitting, though inadequate expression of their appreciation of his life-long devotion to the promulgation of the principles of Free Masonry, as well as his generosity. The dedication took place on Wednesday evening, and the exercises were open to members, visiting brethren, candidates and their ladies. The Rev. William H. Butts made an invocation to the Deity, the statue was then presented to the Memorial committee, then followed the presentation of the statue from the donors to the trustees, then the unveiling in Memorial Hall under the direction of the Memorial committee, assisted by the sculptor, Mr. Edmund T. Quinn, of New York City, grandchildren of Mr. Howard, and special committee of donors and officers of the bodies. This anniversary was a momentous event for all Scottish Rite Masons of the state, and there was an exceptionally large attendance from all parts of the jurisdiction of the Valley of Williamsport, as well as from other points. C. La Rue Munson, Esq., delivered the oration at the unveiling, this being followed by a reception and banquet of great brilliancy. Mr. Howard was a member and vestryman of Trinity Protestant Episcopal church, in which organization his wife also holds membership, and was a member of the board of trade and of the Ross Club. Mr. Howard died March 5, 1901.

Mr. Howard married, December 28, 1853, Mary Woodhead, a native of England, and they are the, parents of one son, Samuel T., who is an employee of the firm of Howard & Perley.

Source: Genealogical and Personal History of Lycoming County, John W. Jordan, Lewis Historical Publishing Co., 1906.

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