Charles Tisdale Howard

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Charles Tisdale Howard
Head and shoulders of an unsmiling 39 year old man with a walrus moustache in 1895
1st United States Attorney for the
District of South Dakota
In office
PresidentBenjamin Harrison
Personal details
BornFebruary 16, 1856
Eckford, Michigan, U.S.
DiedJune 23, 1936
Pipestone, Minnesota, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
Spouse(s)Eugenia Jerome Beecher
ChildrenAlbert, Charles, Paul and Harriet
Alma materAlbion College

Charles Tisdale Howard (February 16, 1856 - June 23, 1936) was an attorney and Republican party politician, the first United States Attorney for the District of South Dakota, served as the fourth Speaker of the South Dakota House of Representatives, and was elected a Minnesota District Court Judge for the Fifth Judicial District in 1928.

Early life and education[edit]

Howard was born in Eckford, Michigan on February 16, 1856, and was the fourth of five children and only son born to Russell and Emeline Howard (née Morse). His father Russell Marshall Howard was a farmer and one of the first settlers of Eckford, and was one of the original old line whigs and a founding member of Michigan’s Republican party.

He graduated from Albion College in Albion, Michigan in 1880 with a Bachelor of Philosophy degree,[1] and then joined a law firm in Marshall where he served a legal apprenticeship. He passed the Bar exam in 1882 and then moved with his family to Redfield, in the Dakota territory where he was active in Republican party politics.

Political career[edit]

When South Dakota was formally granted statehood in 1889, President Benjamin Harrison appointed him United States Attorney for the District of South Dakota, a post he held until 1892. When the twenty-third president lost his 1892 bid for re-election, Howard ran for a seat in the state legislature in 1894 representing Spink County, and was elected Speaker of the House by his Republican colleagues.[2]

Howard was installed as Grand Chancellor for the Knights of Pythias order in Aberdeen, South Dakota in 1894.[3]

He was elected a District Court of Minnesota Judge for the Fifth Judicial Circuit in 1928.

Personal life[edit]

Charles T. Howard married Eugenia Jerome Beecher on October 19, 1892 in Redwood Falls, Minnesota. They had four children Albert Russell Howard, Charles Beecher Howard, Captain Paul Eugene Howard (USN), and Harriet Howard Gano (named after Eugenia Beecher's sister Harriet and distant cousin Harriet Beecher Stowe).[4]

His son-in-law was the highly decorated Naval Officer Vice Admiral Roy Alexander Gano, a native of Pipestone, Minnesota who married his daughter Harriet.

Judge Howard died on June 23, 1936 at the age of 80 years old in Pipestone, Minnesota where he is buried.


  1. ^ "Albion College Graduating Class Index, 1843-1900 | Stockwell-Mudd Library". Albion College. Retrieved 2016-08-14.
  2. ^ "Historical Listing: Charles T. Howard". South Dakota Legislative Research Council. South Dakota Legislature. Retrieved 2016-08-14.
  3. ^ Herreid, Charles N. "Early History of the Knights of Pythias". SDGenWeb Archives. USGenWeb. Retrieved 2016-08-14.
  4. ^ Heidelberger, Cory Allen (2016-02-29). "Descendant of Early SD Republican Urges Daugaard to Veto Anti-Trans Potty Bill". Dakota Free Press. Retrieved 2016-08-14.