|John Howard, prison reformer, above main entrance of Shrewsbury prison. Photograph from Wikimedia Commons taken by R J Higginson 2009.|
In January 1790 John Howard died of typhus at Kherson in present day Ukraine. He is said to have contracted the disease on one of his prison visits.
Howard was buried in the Ukraine. Though he had requested a quiet burial, without pomp and ceremony, he was evidently judged an important person, and the Prince of Moldovia himself was in attendance at what in fact turned out to be a rather elaborate funeral.
When news of Howard's death reached England a month later, a series of commemorative John Howard tokens was struck, including one reading "Go forth" and "Remember the Debtors in Gaol".
Howard became the first civilian to be honoured with a statue in St. Paul's Cathedral, London. Statues were also erected in his honour at Kherson and at Bedford and other English prisons.
|Memorial for John Howard. John Bacon the Younger (1777-1859). 1795. St. Paul's Cathedral, City of London. Located near entrance to crypt. Image from http://www.victorianweb.org/sculpture/funerary/howard1.html, photograph taken by George P. Landow.|
In 1786, four years before his death, a monument to Howard had been proposed. A subscription list was got up and a poem lauding his achievements was published.
I found it interesting to discover relatives from two different branches of my family tree supporting prison reform.
- Howard, John (1726?-1790) Dictionary of National Biography in Wikisource