Howes Family Association Beginnings in 1987





   Richard R. Howes, visited my husband, Richard S. Howes and me in late summer or early fall of 1986 and said that we should plan a reunion in Dennis the following year as it was the 350th anniversary of Thomas and Mary Howes coming to this country.  He and I pretty much planned the reunion by phone and letters over the next several months and got mailings out to everyone we knew related to the Howes family.  As Richard was from Ashfield originally and they held yearly reunions there, he knew what needed to be done to organize one.  It turned out that on a beautiful September day in 1987 about 350 Howes related people from many parts of the country and Canada gathered at Carleton Hall and had a wonderful day with presentations by Jean Howes on the Howes Circus, Kimball Howes on the Howes Brothers Photographers and talks by Dennis historian Nancy Thacher Reid and by Phyllis Horton.  Nancy had grown up in South Dennis and was doing a lot of research on Dennis history.  Phyllis grew up in Dennisport and also was very involved with local history. 


Many people brought wonderful Howes related artifacts to share and Richard R. Howes conducted the general meeting, which was held outdoors in the parking lot of Carleton Hall.  After a delicious lunch provided by the Dennis Historical Society board members everyone visited the Howes burying ground where short services were given by ministers of 3 denominations.  Next came a wine and cheese party at the 1736 Josiah Dennis Manse Museum.  Everyone was on their own for dinner after which many of us gathered at Carleton Hall.  It was decided there to form the Howes Family Association and officers and directors were elected.  Several people gave donations for start-up expenses. 

 Lewis L. Howes was elected president, Kimball Howes, vice president, Nancy S. Howes, treasurer and Joanne Howes, secretary.  Other directors were Adelia A. Bardwell, E. David Howes Jr, Katherine H. Richardson, Mary Ruth Howes, Richard R. Howes and Robert A. Howes. 


Since then the Association has been very active and has held reunions every three years in Dennis, Ashfield, Cummington, Plymouth and Salem, Massachusetts, and Brewster, New York. Quarterly newsletters go out to our members to share family information and history.    Donations are given each year to various historical societies that are instrumental in preserving Howes history and genealogy and from time to time for other purposes related to the Howes family.     


Our president, Lewis L. Howes and I set up the format of the Howes Family Association and he wrote and edited the newsletters for several years. After that Katie and Larry Richardson edited and distributed them and later Susan Peosky took over that task.  Carol Wister became membership chairman and Paul Allis newsletter editor.  Adelia Bardwell became president after Lewis Howes could no longer carry on and she and Paul sent out the newsletters for many years.  After 23 years, in August 2010 I turned the treasury over to Mark H. Howes and Carol turned over keeping the membership list to him as well.  Adelia also “retired and Susan Ashton was elected our new president.   Her sister, Janet Howes was already our secretary.  Many of us who were originally directors have stayed on the board of directors for continuity.  We are really happy to have these younger members "come aboard", as Lewis Howes would say.  They are very interested in the family history and are doing a great job already.  We feel that the Howes Family Association is in good hands for many years to come. 


Nancy S.Howes

March 6, 2011

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