Noah, Mary & Little Boy Howland - Oak Hill Cemetery - Lawrence, KS
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Benchmark Blasterz
N 38° 57.460 W 095° 12.715
15S E 308341 N 4314404
Quick Description: The broken column gravestone for the Howland family, Noah, Mary, and "Little Boy" stands in Lawrence's beautiful, tragic and historic Oak Hill Cemetery.
Location: Kansas, United States
Date Posted: 4/7/2013 1:33:18 PM
Waymark Code: WMGT81
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Marine Biologist
Views: 5

Long Description:
Three members of the Howland family, Noah, his wife Mary, and their son Little Boy, are buried under a broken column headstone in Lawrence Kansas' Oak Hill Cemetery. Both Noah and Mary were emigrants to KS: Noah was born in Massachusetts, and Mary was born in Kentucky. Little Boy's birth and death dates are not inscribed in the stone.

From William G. Cutler's History of the State of Kansas, some fragmentary history of Noah and Mary Howland in a biographical sketch of their son-in-law, who married the Howland's adopted daughter Emma Coseboom: (visit link)

"E. A. BENEFILED, farmer, Section 27, P. O. Lawrence. Settled on present place in August, 1882. There are 127 acres in the home farm, devoted to mixed farming. Mr. Benefield was born in Hamilton County, Ind., December 13, 1855. He was educated in his native county, and then learned harness-making as a trade. In 1869, he settled in Neosho County, Kan., where he operated the engine in a saw mill about three years, and then engaged in farming in that county until 1879, when he moved to Douglas County, following the same business. He was married in Douglas County, December 25, 1879, to Miss Emma Coseboom, an adopted daughter of N. D. Howland and wife. Noah D. Howland (deceased), was born in Fall River, Mass., November 2, 1823. Engaged in blacksmithing and farming until 1854, when he joined the "first party" of the Emigrant Aid Society, and pre-empted the farm now occupied by E. A. Benefield. Mr. Howland was married in Lawrence, in 1855, to Miss Mary T., daughter of P. D. Jones, Esq." [end]

We wondered about Howland got his farm in KS. It turns out, he used a perfectly legal mechanism that sped settlement in the Kansas and Nebraska Territories in the 1850s:

From Wikipedia: (visit link)

The Preemption Act of 1841, also known as the Distributive Preemption Act (27 Cong., Ch. 16; 5 Stat. 453), was a federal law approved on September 4, 1841 during the early presidency of John Tyler. It was designed to "appropriate the proceeds of the sales of public lands... and to grant 'pre-emption rights' to individuals" who were already living on federal lands (commonly referred to as "squatters").

The Preemption Act of 1841 was widely utilized by settlers in Kansas Territory and Nebraska Territory (which were opened to settlement in 1854). When the Homestead Act was enacted in 1862, claims under the Preemption Act sharply decreased.

The Preemption Act of 1841 permitted "squatters" who were living on federal government owned land to purchase up to 160 acres (65 ha) at a very low price (not less than $1.25 per acre, or $3.09 per hectare) before the land was to be offered for sale to the general public. To qualify under the law, the "squatter" had to be:

1. a "head of household";
2. a single man over 21, or a widow;
3. a citizen of the United States (or was intending to become naturalized); and,
4. a resident of the claimed land for a minimum of 14 months.

The act further stipulated that Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Alabama, Missouri, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Michigan, or any state afterward admitted to the Union, would be paid 10% of the proceeds from the sale of such public land.

The Preemption Act of 1841 declared that an individual was allowed to acquire federal land and claim it as one's property. However, for the claimant to preserve ownership over the land, the claimant had to do some things to legitimize the claim. One way was to be actively residing on the land. Another was to be consistently working to improve the land (for a minimum of five years). It was not necessary that the claimant be titled to the land, just to be living there and working toward improving the stake was enough. If, however, the land remained idle for six months, the government could step in and take the property.

Sections 8 and 9 of the Pre-emption Act of 1841 provided for the granting of 500,000 acres of land to each included State and provided that the proceeds from the sales of such lands, "....shall be faithfully applied to objects of internal improvement...namely, roads, railways, bridges, canals and improvement of water-courses, and draining of swamps...."


The Preemption Act of 1841 helped to establish the doctrine of Manifest Destiny in North America. The Kansas and Nebraska Territories were largely settled by claims brought under the act. In 1891, the Preemption Act was repealed by Congress with the adoption of the Land Revision Act." [end]
Headstone/Monument Text:
[Side 1] Little Boy [side 2] Noah D. Howland Born at Westport Mass Nov 2, 1823 Died May 6, 1878 [side 3] Mary T. Howland Born in Kentucky Oct 15, 1833 Died Sep 2, 1882

Website with More Information: Not listed

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Benchmark Blasterz visited Noah, Mary & Little Boy Howland - Oak Hill Cemetery - Lawrence, KS 3/14/2013 Benchmark Blasterz visited it