Howe, the name of three British officers connected with American history, all of them sons of Emanuel Scrope Howe, Viscount Howe in the peerage of Ireland. I. George Angnstns, general, born in 1724, killed at Ticonderoga, July 8, 1758. In 1757 he was sent to America in command of the 60th regiment, and arrived at Halifax in July. On Sept. 28 he was put in command of the 55th foot, and on Dec. 29 was made brigadier general. On July 6, 1758, he landed under Abercrombie at the outlet of Lake George. Coming suddenly upon a French force, he fell in the ensuing skirmish. The general court of Massachusetts appropriated £250 for a monument to him, which was erected in Westminster abbey. II. Richard, admiral, born in London in 1725, died there, Aug. 5, 1799. He entered the navy at the age of 14, and served with distinction against the French from 1745 to 1759. After the conclusion of peace he obtained a seat at the admiralty board. In 1765 he was appointed treasurer of the navy, and entered parliament for Dartmouth. Five years later he was made rear admiral of the blue, and commanded a fleet in the Mediterranean. In 1776 he sailed for North America with the rank of vice admiral of the blue, and as joint commissioner with his brother William for restoring peace.
He was variously employed against the American forces for two years, and in August, 1778, had an indecisive encounter with a superior French fleet under Count d'Estaing, off the coast of Rhode Island, both fleets being much shattered by a severe storm. In April, 1782, he was made a peer of Great Britain, under the title of Viscount Howe, having since 1758 borne the Irish title of the same grade, inherited from his brother George. In the latter part of 1782 he succeeded in bringing into the harbor of Gibraltar the fleet sent to the relief of Gen. Eliott, then besieged there by the combined French and Spanish forces. For these and previous services he was in August, 1788, created Earl and Baron Howe of Langar. In 1793 he was put in command of the channel fleet. On June 1, 1794, he gained a victory over the French off the western coast of France, and received the thanks of parliament. In the succeeding year he was made admiral of the fleet, and in 1797 a knight of the garter. His last important service was the suppression of the mutiny in the fleet at Spithead in 1797. His memoirs were compiled by Sir John Barrow (London, 1838). III. William, general, born Aug. 10, 1729, died July 12, 1814. He commanded the light infantry under Wolfe in the battle on the heights of Abraham, near Quebec (1759), and in 1775 succeeded Gen. Gage as commander of the British forces in America. He commanded at the battle of Bunker Hill, and after the evacuation of Boston retired to Halifax. Subsequently he defeated the Americans on Long Island, Aug. 27, 1776, took possession of New York, Sept. 15, directed the movements in the Jerseys and in Pennsylvania, and repelled the American attack at Germantown, Oct. 4, 1777. He was succeeded by Sir Henry Clinton in May, 1778. His conduct was severely criticised, but an investigation ordered by parliament in 1779 freed him from blame.
He succeeded his brother Richard in the Irish viscounty, and at the time of his death was a privy councillor and governor of Plymouth.
I. Samuel Gridley, an American philanthropist, born in Boston, Nov. 10,1801. He studied in the Boston grammar school, thence went to Brown university, where he graduated in 1821, and studied medicine in Boston. In 1824 he went to Greece, and served as a surgeon in the patriot army and in various other capacities till 1830. In 1831 he returned to the United States, and soon became interested in the project for establishing an institution for the blind in Boston. He accepted the charge of it, and embarked at once for Europe, to acquire the necessary information and engage teachers, visiting the schools of France and England for this purpose. While in Paris he was made president of the Polish committee, and undertook to carry and distribute funds for the relief of the detachment of the Polish army which had crossed into Prussia. In the discharge of this duty he was arrested and imprisoned for about six weeks by the Prussian government. He was then liberated, and escorted over the French frontier by night. In 1832 the Perkins institution for the blind, in Boston, was put in operation under his charge.
A notable achievement in this institution is the education of Laura Bridgman, a blind deaf mute. (See Bridgman, Laura.) He took a prominent part in founding the experimental school for the training of idiots, which resulted in the organization, in 1851, of the Massachusetts school for idiotic and feebleminded youth. He was actively engaged in the anti-slavery movement, and was a freesoil candidate for congress from Boston in 1846. He engaged earnestly in the sanitary movement in behalf of the soldiers during the civil war. In 1867 he again went to Greece as bearer of supplies for the Cretans in their struggle with the Turks, and subsequently edited in Boston "The Cretan." In 1871 he was one of the commissioners to visit Santo Domingo and report upon the question of the annexation of that island to the United States, of which he has since been an earnest advocate. He has published a " Historical Sketch of the Greek Revolution" (1828), and a "Reader for the Blind," in raised characters (1839). II. Julia Ward, an American poetess, wife of the preceding, born in New York, May 27, 1819. Her early education comprised an unusually wide range of studies.
In 1843 she was married to Dr. Howe, with whom she made a tour in Europe. In 1850 she again went to Europe, being absent more than a year, a great part of the time in Rome. After her return she published " Passion Flowers," a volume of poems (1854); "The World's Own," a drama (1855); "Words for the Hour" (1856); " Lenore," a tragedy (1857); and "Hippolytus," a tragedy (1858).
During the winter of 1858-9 she visited Cuba, and in 1860 published "A Trip to Cuba." A volume of poems, " Later Lyrics," appeared in 1866. In 1867 she accompanied her husband to Greece, and published "From the Oak to the Olive " (1868). She is a prominent speaker in behalf of woman's rights.