Can you picture Dr. Howard’s house?

Margaret Harness would like to know if there are any early photos of the house at 226 W. Main Street in Greenfield, or where she might find any photos of the building. It was built by Dr. Noble P. Howard.

For our readers, this is the Willowe’s Basketry and Yarn Haus.

But who was Dr. Noble Howard? No longer does his shingle hang outside his building in downtown Greenfield.

From the time of his arrival as a young physician in 1843 until his death in 1895, his medical practice touched countless lives. Especially during the smallpox epidemic in Blue River Township, when fearing transmission of the disease, Howard would change his contaminated clothes and leave them in a field before returning to town.

At the age of 40 in 1862, Dr. Howard was commissioned as an assistant surgeon in the Twelfth Regiment of Indiana Volunteers. Ordinarily, only one doctor accompanied a regiment, but the number of wounded soon led to the assignment of one surgeon and two assistant surgeons for each 1,000-man regiment. Howard served the Twelfth Regiment through the siege of Vicksburg and the Atlanta Campaign. He also was involved with Sherman’s March to the Sea.

Dr. Howard was a Whig and eventually a member of the new Republican party. After he returned from the Civil War, he served as Deputy Collector of the Internal Revenue for Hancock County.

He died after a long illness at 5 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 25, 1895. When he came to Hancock County, it was a wilderness, but he never faltered in his duty to patients. He left two sons and a daughter. He was undoubtedly one of the most energetic men in our county. His main object was to relive the suffering of humanity. Look for photos for Margaret.

I have written more about Dr. Howard in my book “Also Great.”

Enough. I have told you everything I know and some things I don’t. Talk to me.

Author photo
Rorye Hatcher is a reporter at the Greenfield Daily Reporter. She can be reached at ​317-477-3211 or