The Howes were shepherds originally from Winterbourne St. Martin in Dorset. As shepherds they worked at many farms in Dorest. During our research we followed three generations of Howes working on farms in Upwey, Litton Cheney, Gorwell, Wareham, Corfe Castle, Langton Matravers, Ulwell, Swanage and Studland.
Thomas Howe was born in Kezworth Farms, Wareham, Dorset. As a young man he worked as an agricultural labourer in Dorset. Thomas moved to Newfoundland around 1877 when he was 17 years old. At that time his parents were living in the Swanage area.
I am told Thomas came to Newfoundland to work for two years for a friend of his father who had either a shipping or a fishing business in St. John’s. It is believed he left this employment before the two years expired and started farming in Brooklyn, Bonavista Bay. Thomas’ first wife was Anna Jane Sutton Stares. The Stares were also farmers in Brooklyn.
In 1888, Thomas was appointed to the Department of Agriculture and Mines and worked there for 46 years. He held positions of crown lands surveyor, justice of peace and, for 29 years, he was the province’s first chief woods ranger. Thomas had a lifelong commitment to forestry. In 1935 he was awarded the Imperial Service Medal from King George V in recognition of his long and meritorious service.
Thomas’ second wife was Selina Andrews of Upper Gullies. Thomas and Selina died in Port Blandford and were buried there in the Anglican Cemetery. Thomas had nine children and his descendants, for the most part, are in Port Blandford, Whitbourne, Upper Gullies, St. John’s and Corner Brook.
On 1 May 1992, a 54 kilometres square demonstration forest in Gander and was named after Thomas – the Thomas Howe Demonstration Forest.
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