Siblings Barbara Nichols and Luther Howes

Hello, little darlings! Look at the older sister, protectively holding her little arm around her baby brother!

These cuties in this faded photo were siblings Barbara and Luther Howes from Norfolk, Massachusetts! Barbara was 4 1/2 years old when this photo was taken, and her little brother Luther just 15 months.

Finding the children in the records was easy-peasy. I love photos of siblings cause cross-checking if I have found the right persons is so much easier.

Barbara Wheaton Howes was born on June 12th, 1906, and her brother Luther Hall Howes on September 26th, 1909, in Norwood, Norfolk, Massachussets, to parents Herbert Harold Howes and Cora Wheaton née Luther. So this photo was taken at around Christmas of 1910. Two and a half years later, on August 16th, 1913, the third sibling, Harold Dudley Howes, was born, so he was not born yet when this photo was taken.

In the 1930 Census, all three siblings were still living with their parents. Barbara was then 24 years old and working as a teacher in a public school. In the same year, Barbara married Charles Owen Nichols. In the 1940 Census, Charles was listed as a wholesale salesman of wool bags. By 1940, the couple had two children: son Charles H. Howes who was 5 years old, and a 5-month-old baby John W. The couple might have had another child, but I don’t know his name.

Barbara kept busy after the birth of her children. She had graduated of Tufts University and received her masters degree in guidance counseling from Boston University. She worked as a guidance counselor in Duxbury and Hanover school systems.

Barbara passed away in November 1988. Besides her career details, her obituary that I came across on Ancestry reveals many wonderful details of her long life, :

Barbara Wheaton (Howes) NICHOLS obit.

Barbara’s son Charles was married to Nancy Ryder. Perhaps the couple had children? Barbara’s other son John seems to be alive today, but I can’t find any details on him. The obituary says Barbara had 3 grandchildren.

Now to her little brother Luther. Funnily, Luther’s wife’s name was also Barbara, like his sister. Luther married Barbara West Taylor on June 23rd, 1934, in Provincetown, Massachussets. According to the 1940 Census, Luther was a reporter for a daily paper, his WWII draft card from 1940 shows that his emplyer at the time was Cape Cod Standard Times. Luther passed away in December 1972 and was buried at Dennis Village Cemetery, Barnstable County, Massachusetts.

Here’s what’s said about him in is obituary in the Barnstable Patriot from January 4th, 1973:

Luther H. Howes, 63, wellknown Cape newsman and retired teacher, who died suddenly at his home in Cummaquid Dec. 23. An avid sports fan and former coach, Lou was watching a televised football game when he suffered an apparent heart attack. At the time of his death, he was court house correspondent for the Falmouth Enterprise and Radio Station WOCB. Born in North Middleboro, the son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Herbert Howes, he attended Springfield College for two years and was graduated from Boston University. He began his newspapering career as the first Provincetown correspondent for the Cape Cod Standard Times, later working out of the Hyannis office for the newspaper. For five years, he was editor of the Barnstable Patriot. He also at one time edited the Harwich Independent and was the Cape Cod correspondent for the Boston Post. In World War II he worked out of the public relations office at Camp Edwards. Mixed with his news career, Lou also taught school for 20 years; in Yarmouth, Mt. Vernon, N.Y. and at Barnstable where he was for several seasons basketball, assistant football, soccer and girls’ field hockey coach. For three years, Mr. Howes was manager of Cummaquid Golf Course. Declining health in recent years forced him to give up many of the activities which he so enjoyed, but his sense of humor stayed with him always as did his gentleness, his love of young people, and his devotion to his constant canine companion Fritz. He leaves his widow, Barbara (Taylor) Howes; three daughters, Mrs. Ray M. (Deborah) Stewart of Barnstable, Mrs. Peter (Carolee) Bearse of Centerville, and Mrs. John (Suzanne) Stevens of Merrow, Conn.; a sister, Mrs. Barbara Nichols of East Dennis; a brother, Harold of Dennis, and five grandchildren.

A few words about Luther’s three daughters: Deborah (1935-2007), Carolee (1939-2004) and Suzanne (1943-2017).

I found this Barnstable High School yearbook photo of Luther’s daughter Deborah Howes from 1953:

Deborah had married Ray M. Stewart. Her obituary from 2007, published in the The Barnstable Patriot, says that she was editor of The Barnstable Patriot. Debbie grew up on the Cape, living in Provincetown, Hyannis and Cummaquid. She graduated from Barnstable High School in 1953. After receiving her diploma from Cape Cod Secretarial School, she spent her career as a secretary and title examiner. She was socially actively engaged in a number of projects and committees. The obituary also names all her children and nieces:

Mrs. Stewart is survived by her children, USAF Technical Sergeant Matthew Howes Stewart of Oahu, Hawaii and Annie Stewart Hartford of North Andover; her son-in-law, Glen; three grandchildren, Glen Jr., Brendan and Katherine Hartford; her sister and brother-in law, Suzanne Howes and John Stevens of Tolland, Conn.; three nieces, Christine Bearse, Nicole (Stevens) Haines, and Stacey (Bearse) Marino; and four grandnieces, Madeline Haines and Jennifer, Elizabeth and Allison Marino.

Deborah’s sister Carolee T. Howes lived in Portland, Maine, and was married to Peter Bearse. She passed away in 2004. And Suzanne Howes, their youngest sister, was married to John Stevens of Merrow, Conn. She passed away in 2017. Their children were mentioned in Deborah’s obituary.

I was also able to discover some information on the parents of the sweet siblings in the photo: Herbert Howes (1881-1940) and Cora Howes née Luther (1881-1958). Father Herbert was the president of Hyannis Normal School in Barnstable, Massachussets. And there is a photo of their mother Cora, published on Ancestry:

Cora Luther Howes

And then there was Barbara and Luther’s youngest brother Harold Dudley, whose yearbook photo I could find on Ancestry. His fellow-students described him as “Admiral. His popularity and personality stand out, we all agree.” He was married to Dorothy née Canning, but I don’t know if the couple had any children. Harold passed away in 1977.

What incredible lives these two kiddos grew up to live! It’s been such a pleasure to research these amazing siblings and their family!

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