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William Howe, 5th Viscount Howe facts for kids

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The Viscount Howe

Gen. Sir William Howe.jpg
Engraving by Henry Bryan Hall
Commander-in-Chief of British land forces
In office
September 1775 – May 1778
Monarch George III
Preceded by Thomas Gage
Succeeded by Henry Clinton
Member of Parliament
for Nottingham
In office
1758–1780
Serving with Willoughby Aston (1758–1761)
Serving with John Plumptre (1761–1774)
Serving with Charles Sedley (1774–1778)
Serving with Abel Smith (1778–1779)
Serving with Robert Smith (1779–1780)
Preceded by George Howe
Succeeded by Daniel Parker Coke
Personal details
Born (1729-08-10)10 August 1729
England
Died 12 July 1814(1814-07-12) (aged 84)
Twickenham, United Kingdom
Resting place Twickenham
Political party Whig
Spouse(s)
Frances Connolly (m. 1765)
Military service
Allegiance  Great Britain
Branch/service  United Kingdom Army
Years of service 1746–1803
Rank General
Commands Colonel, 60th (later 58th) Regiment of Foot
Colonel, 46th Regiment of Foot
Commander-in-Chief of British land forces
Colonel, 19th Light Dragoons
Northern District
Battles/wars

War of the Austrian Succession
Seven Years' War

American War of Independence

French Revolutionary Wars

William Howe, 5th Viscount Howe, KB, PC (10 August 1729 – 12 July 1814) was a British Army officer who rose to become Commander-in-Chief of British land forces in the Colonies during the American War of Independence. Howe was one of three brothers who had distinguished military careers. In historiography of the American war he is usually referred to as Sir William Howe to distinguish him from his brother Richard, who was 4th Viscount Howe at that time.

Having joined the army in 1746, Howe saw extensive service in the War of the Austrian Succession and Seven Years' War. He became known for his role in the capture of Quebec in 1759 when he led a British force to capture the cliffs at Anse-au-Foulon, allowing James Wolfe to land his army and engage the French in the Battle of the Plains of Abraham. Howe also participated in the campaigns to take Louisbourg, Belle Île and Havana. He was appointed Lieutenant-Governor of the Isle of Wight, a post he held until 1795.

Howe was sent to North America in March 1775, arriving in May after the American War of Independence broke out. After leading British troops to a costly victory in the Battle of Bunker Hill, Howe took command of all British forces in America from Thomas Gage in September of that year. Howe's record in North America was marked by the successful capture of both New York City and Philadelphia. However, poor campaign planning for 1777 contributed to the failure of John Burgoyne's Saratoga campaign, which played a major role in the entry of France into the war. Howe's role in developing those plans and the degree to which he was responsible for British failures that year (despite his personal success at Philadelphia) have both been subjects of contemporary and historic debate.

He was knighted after his successes in 1776. He resigned his post as Commander-in-Chief, British land forces in America, in 1777, and the next year returned to England, where he was at times active in the defence of the British Isles. He sat in the House of Commons from 1758 to 1780 for Nottingham. He inherited the Viscountcy of Howe upon the death of his brother Richard in 1799. He married, but had no children, and the viscountcy became extinct with his death in 1814.

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