An American Family History

Howard Family


Matthew Howard was born on April 30 1740 in Dartmouth, Bristol County, Massachusetts. His father was William Howard.

At an early date, Matthew Howard, a surveyor and afterwards member of parliament for Leeds, was engaged in surveying the Township, where he became acquainted with a daughter of Clark Nichols. The lady was very young, but Mr. Howard was determined to make her his wife, which he did subsequently. (from History of Leeds & Grenville)

Stephen Howard (1762)
John Howard (1763),
Dyer Howard (1764, married Eleanor Hill),
Peter Howard (1772)
Eleanor Howard (1774, married Vincent Booth),
William Howard (1780),
Edward Howard (1783), and
Sarah Howard (1788, married Elijah Adams).

He moved to the Beekman Patent with his father. He was described as a fuller and was taxed in Nine Partners, Dutchess County, New York, in 1763, 1767 and 1770.

He removed to Hoosick about 1774 and was assessed £70 on his land in 1779.

In 1777, he joined the British army at Skeensborough as an ensign. After the defeat at Bennington, he was listed as killed or captured. He claimed a loss of £57 sterling as compensation for his imprisonment, and was awarded £40.

In June, 1781, he rescued Dr. George Smyth from gaol in Hoosic Falls and piloted him to St. John's .

In July, 1781 he led a raiding party s to capture John Bleecker of Hoosic Falls and was captured. General Schuyler wrote

The party that carried of[f] John Bleecker, Esqr. was secured by some people on the  Grants who went in pursuit of them. It was Commanded by one Howard who had  his orders in writing from Colo. St. Leger, commanding at St. Johns. I  believe the Vermonters have [hanged] or will hang Howard.

His estate was confiscated. He received land in Leeds County for his service in the war.

He died in May, 1824:

In Elizabethtown Sunday morning, Matthew Howard, aged 82. He was one of the first settlers in that part of the country and had suffered much during the American Revolutionary War for his attachment to the Royal cause.


United Empire Loyalists were Americans who remained loyal to King George III and the British Empire. They moved to Canada after the American Revolution.

John Howard was born about 1763.

He married Betsey Breckenridge.

James B. Howard (1803)
Anna Howard
Pamela Howard
Charlotte Howard.

In 1782, he served in the engineer's department at St. Johns, Quebec, under Lt. Hawkins.

He was granted land
200 acres 4 Sep 1800, Lot 13 Con 8 of Elizabethtown

78 acres 30 June 1801, Lot 22, Con 6 of Wolford Twp, a United Empire Loyalist

1797 census
John Howard 50 acres in 1797
Jonus (James)

In 1799 he was a municipal assessor of Elizabethtown.

In the 2nd Regiment of Leeds Militia, he was commissioned December 15, 1807, as a captain.
1803 Census information

John Howard

He removed to Leeds township in 1811.

His son James B., a carpenter, lived in Elizabethtown in 1833, and had served in the Leeds Militia in the War of 1812, and married in Oct 1824, Sally, dau. of Adonirem Burritt of Augusta.


Peter Howard was born about 1772 in New York. His father was Matthew Howard.

His first wife was  Sarah Munsell.

In 1791 Peter petitioned the government for land as the son of a loyalist and was granted 200 acres.

His second wife was Margaret McCready Seaman, a widow [of Nehemiah Seaman].

The following autumn [1816], a road was cut by Peter Howard, M. P., from the present site of Toledo to Oliver's Ferry and Perth, nearly on the line now traveled. (from History of Leeds & Grenville)

He died in 1843 in Brockville.






from the Dictionary of Canadian Biography

Howard, Peter farmer, businessman, politician, jp, office holder, and doctor; b. c. 1771 in the American colonies, probably New York, fourth son of Matthew Howard;

m. first Sarah Munsel (Munsall), and they had three sons and two daughters;

m. secondly 17 Oct. 1833 Margaret [McCready] Seaman, a widow [of Nehemiah Seaman], and they had no children;

d. 24 Nov. 1843 in Brockville, Upper Canada.

Peter Howard’s father [Matthew Howard] was a farmer living in Pittstown, N.Y., when the American revolution broke out. Taking up arms with the British in 1777, he served with several loyalist corps, was employed as a spy, and was captured several times.

After the war he settled in western Quebec with his family. In 1791 Peter petitioned the government for land as the son of a loyalist and was granted 200 acres. He owned property in several townships in the newly formed province of Upper Canada but made his residence in Elizabethtown Township, where his father and other family members lived.

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©Roberta Tuller 2023
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