John Badlam Howe Biography

Amongst the Howe Military School memorabilia this Association has preserved, is a ~1910-vintage Northern Indiana history book with the following biography of John Badlam Howe, whose bequest established our School. This is the most detailed of his biographies we have found.

Hon. John B. Howe– He whose name heads this article was among the foremost men of Northern Indiana–a pioneer of a pioneer–a man of intellect and heart, of whom the world has none too many. The village name was changed in memory of his life and career here, it formerly being called Lima. Mr. Howe was born of English parents in the City of Boston, March 3, 1813, was destined by force of character and by natural ability, to achieve a great place in the annals of Indiana. His father, the Rev. James B. Howe, an eloquent minister of the Episcopal Church, and his beloved mother, whose maiden name was Sarah Badlam, were Puritans, who gave fair education to their children. The father was a graduate of Harvard College, and an earnest advocate of education and morals.

Stephen Badlam [John Howe’s maternal grandfather] was Brigadier General of militia, who joined the Colonial Army in 1775, and the following year, as Major of Artillery, took possession July 4 of the point which, from the circumstances, was named Mount Independence. After the war he located at Dorchester, where he became magistrate and Deacon of the Church.

At the age of sixteen, John B. Howe entered Trinity College, from which institution he graduated at the age of nineteen. This was in 1832 and in the autumn of that year he went to Detroit, thence to Marshall, then in 1833 he moved to Lima. He has read law in Michigan, and was subsequently admitted to the bar, and for a number of years practiced with success. in later years he took up banking for an occupation. He was the author of numerous books–several volumes on Political Economy and Finance. He was a member of the Indiana State Legislature in 1840, representing the counties of Steuben, DeKalb, Noble, and LaGrange, and in 1850, was a member of the State Constitutional Convention.

In 1846, Mr. Howe was married to Miss Frances Glidden of New Hampshire, who was born in 1825. They lived a beautiful and happy life till overtaken by old age. It was Mr. Howe who accomplished much toward the many educational institutions of Lima including the private and public schools. The present Howe Military School of Howe, was founded largely by a bequest of his in 1884 and added to by his wife later.

Mr. Howe died January 22, 1883, and his remains, with those of his wife, are deposited beneath the Chapel of the Episcopal Church in Howe.

Howe History