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John B. Howard, formerly a carpenter and builder, who is now living in retirement at Franklin Falls, was born in Burlington, Vt., May 13, 1828, son of Ezekiel and Nancy (Burbank) Howard. The father, who was a native of Connecticut, first settled in Shelburne, Vt., and later in Burlington. A carpenter and bridge builder, the active period of his life was devoted to these callings. He died in Burlington in 1832. His wife, Nancy, who was a native of Grantham, N.H., became the mother of five children, of whom John B. and Emily are living. Emily is the wife of George B. Mathews, of Franklin. The others were: Loretta, who married Edward Doxey, now a resident of Elgin, Ill.; Charles H., who died in Oregon; and Maria, who died young. Mrs. Ezekiel Howard married for her second husband Stillman Clark, of Georgia, Vt., and passed the rest of her life in that town.
John B. Howard was educated in the district schools. While still young he learned the carpenter’s trade in Burlington, and afterward worked as a journeyman in Grafton and Worcester, Mass., and Nashua, N.H., about a year in each place. In 1854 he went to Minneapolis, Minn., where he resided until 1871, and then returned to Vermont. He resided for a time in Georgia, from which town he removed to St. Albans; and in 1881 he came to Franklin Falls. Since settling here he has conducted several building operations in this village, in Northfield, and in Tilton; and he has improved his own residence, located on Franklin Street. He retired from active labor some time ago. In politics he is a Democrat, and in 1892 he served with ability as a member of the Board of Selectmen.
In 1856, while residing in Minneapolis, Mr. Howard contracted his first marriage with Emily Arnold. She was born in Jamestown, N.Y., daughter of Henry C. and Eliza Arnold, the former of whom was an artist. Both her parents are now deceased. Mr. Howard’s second wife, whom he married May 13, 1882, was Arletta Hathaway, of Boston, Mass. She died March 30, 1889, leaving one daughter, Mabel A. The latter and Maria Albina, his daughter by his first wife, reside with their father. Mr. Howard is a member of the Masonic lodge in Franklin and of Mount Horeb Commandery of Concord.