|Name||Benjamin Chew Howard|
Baltimore, Maryland , United States
|| November 05, 1791
|| March 06, 1872
|Contributor||U Ole Polecat|
|Last Modified||U Ole Polecat|
Aug 23, 2004 08:40am
|Info||ref: [Link] |
Benjamin Chew Howard was born 11/5/1791 in Baltimore county Maryland at “Belvedere,” near Baltimore, son of Colonel John Eager Howard and Peggy Chew (Margaret Oswald Chew of Philadelphia, daughter of Benajmin Chew and Elizabeth Oswald). He pursued classical studies, and was graduated from Princeton College (College of New Jersey) in 1809, then three years later with a master's degree. He then studied law, was admitted to the bar and practiced in Baltimore. He served in the War of 1812 and was promoted to command of the Fifth Regiment, subsequently becoming brigadier general, and continued for many years with the State military organization. In 1814, as Captain, he assisted in organizing troops for the defense of Baltimore, and commanded the "mechanical volunteers" at the battle of North Point on 12 September. He married Jane Grant Gilmor (1801-1890), eldest child of William and Marianne Smith Gilmor.
He was a member of the city council of Baltimore in 1820. Howard was a member of Maryland state house delegates from 1824-1825. He was elected as a Jacksonian to the Twenty-first and Twenty-second Congresses (March 4, 1829-March 3, 1833) but declined the mission to Russia tendered by President Van Buren. He was elected as a Jacksonian to the Twenty-fourth Congress and reelected as a Democrat to the Twenty-fifth Congress (March 4, 1835-March 3, 1839); chairman, Committee on Foreign Affairs (Twenty-fourth and Twenty-fifth Congresses).
He was commissioned by President Jackson in 1835, with Richard Rush, of Philadelphia, as peace emissary of the National Government in the controversy over the boundary line between Ohio and Michigan. He was chairman of the committee on foreign relations, and drew up its report on the boundary question (known as the "TOLEDO WAR") with Richard Rush. They succeeded in preventing an armed clash, though not in settling the question.
He was a member of Maryland state senate 1840-1841 and a delegate to Maryland state constitutional convention in 1850. This "Reform Convention of 1850" framed " a new Constitution and Form of Government, except so far as regards the rights and relations existing between master and slave..." (Acts of 1849, ch. 346).
From 1843 till 1862 he was reporter of the supreme court of the United States, perhaps as a result of his long association with Chief Justice Taney. [Chief-Justice Taney was presiding during the Dred Scott case and died on the same day on which the state of Maryland abolished slavery. ] During the Civil War, Howard said "I fear that our country is to be cut up . . . as you would slice up a loaf of bread.". He served as a delegate to the wartime Peace Conference of February 1861 in an effort to devise means to prevent the impending war. He resigned during the vacation following the 1861 Term to become the Democratic nominee for the Maryland governorship, but was defeated by an unconditional Unionist. Princeton gave him the degree of LL.D. in 1869. He published "Reports of Cases in the Supreme Court of the United States from 1843 till 1855" (Baltimore, 1855). He was an Episcopalian and died in Baltimore, 3-6-1872, buried at Greenmount Cemetery, Baltimore, Md.