A selection of notable American Houghtons and Haughtons:
famous, infamous, and some just interesting.
by Charles J. Vella, PhD (c)
Send suggestions for individuals to be included here to
- While there were Houghtons/Haughtons
who were really
infamously black sheep (involved and
of bigamy, prostitution, embezzlement, fraud, pornography, bill
engraving fraud, medical over prescription, poisoning, theft,
lynching, bank robbery, and murder), the more notable are...
- Henry Haughton (~1629) was the first
ot New England in 1629 to New Salem.
- William Houghton
(~1635) was the
emigrant to New England in 1635 to CT.
- Ralph Houghton
(~1624-1705) was the
Ralph Houghton line of Lancaster, MA.
- John Houghton (~1624-1684) was the
founding ancestor of
John Houghton line of Lancaster, MA.
- John Houghton (~1660-1709) was the
founding ancestor of
John Houghton line of Stony Brooke, NJ.
- John Houghton (1668-?), in his legal
the Salem witch trial, supported John
Proctor and his wife Elizabeth, who were accused of witchcraft and were
convicted; John Proctor was hanged.
- Rowland Houghton (1678-1744) was a
Boston mechanic who
designed a new “theodolate,” a brass surveying instrument.
a patent from the General Court of the Colony of Massachusetts in 1735.
This was only the second patent for a mechanical invention issued in
the British colonies of North America. It is the earliest brass
surveying instrument to be patented and documented. One of only
two extant is an incomplete version that is housed in the Smithsonian.
- Ezra Houghton
(1722-1789) was a Tory loyalist in the
American Revolutionary War. There were only 4 Houghtons (John Houghton
3d, Solomon Houghton, Nahum Houghton, and Ezra) to stay loyal to
England. All had lands confiscated.
- Lt. Ralph Houghton (1729-1809) was
one of the original
Minutemen in the American Revolution from Milton, MA.
- Elijah Houghton (1746-1830) was the
of the Elijah Houghton line of Virginia.
- Abijah Houghton Jr (1749-1831) was
one of the original
in Rev. War and was wounded at Bunker Hill.
- Daniel Houghton (1755-1775) and
William French were
shot in mass as the first proto-martyrs of the Revolutionary War, dying
as a result of wounds in a fray with the "Yorker" Royalists in which
Vermonters fired no shots.
- Mrs. Ruth Houghton (1775-1844) is the only known
Houghton to be the victim of rape and murder in 1844 (by Thomas Barrett
who was executed in 1845)
- Hon. Samuel Prentiss (1782-1857),
of Lucretia Houghton, was a U.S. Senator from VT, 1831-1842 and a
Supreme Court Judge of VT.
- John W. Houghton (1789-1851) was a
noted Augusta, GA
shoe manufacturer; he left money in his will to build a school for poor
children (1st public school there) and freed his slaves and left money
for them to go to Liberia.
- Joel Houghton (1792-) held first patent for a
mechanical dishwasher in 1850. Never commercially produced.
- Eli Houghton (1797-1865) was a member
of the Church of
the Latter Day Saint at Nauvoo, IL, which Joseph Smith, Jr.
founded. Blessed by Hiram Smith, older brother of the movement's
founder, Joseph Smith.
- Elijah Houghton (1801-1868) was a New
wood and lumber yard owner and a widely published poet in his day.
- Mary Elizabeth Sawyer (1806-1889),
Elizabeth Houghton, was the Mary of the poem "Mary had a little lamb".
- Horace Hoskins Houghton (1808-1879)
was a newspaper
publisher in IL, author, and US Consul to Brazil and Hawaii.
- Dr. Douglass Houghton (1809-1845) was
a mayor of
Detroit, MI and the 1st state geologist of MI.
- David Houghton (1812-1874) and five
of his sons served
in the Union Army in the Civil War; the most soldiers from a single
- Amory Houghton Sr (1812-1882) was the
Corning Glass and the ancestor of the wealthiest Houghton family in
- Lawrence J. Haughton (1819-b1900) was
one of the
wealthiest farmers & slave holders in Chatham Co., NC.
- Martha Maria Houghton (1819-1851) and
her husband Rev.
Joseph Woods Hancock were missionaries to the Sioux Indians.
- Rowland Hussey Macy, Sr (1822-1877),
husband of Louisa
Houghton, was the founder of Macy's Dept. Store.
- Henry Oscar Houghton (1823-1895) was
of the Riverside Press in 1852 and then the publishing company of
Houghton, Mifflin Co. in 1880. His son Henry Oscar Houghton Jr was the
second president of the firm.
- Marilla Houghton (1825-1894), sister
of Henry Oscar
Houghton, and wife of Dr. John Chester Gallup; she and her
husband were noted abolitionists and temperance reformers and founded
Houghton Seminary in Clinton, New York in 1861.
- Rev. Willard J. Houghton (1825-1896)
evangelist minister who founded the Houghton Seminary of Houghton, NY,
which today is the Christian based Houghton College.
- George Harper Houghton (1826-1870)
was a photographer
and went south to photograph the Civil War. Many of his pictures
are in the VT Historical Society in Montpelier. Some of his photos were
used by Ken Burns in his documentary of the Civil War.
- Henry Ludovicus Houghton (1826-1904)
was one of the
Bath, ME Houghton Brothers firm of shipbuilders (along with brothers
Levi Warren and John Reed Houghton, and founded by their father Levi
- James Franklin Houghton (1827-1903)
president of the Home Mutual Insurance Company in San Francisco,
- Sherman Otis Houghton (1828-1914) was
a member of the
US House of Representatives from CA and Mayor of San Jose, CA and had
the Naval ship USS Sherman Houghton named after him. He married
two sisters, Mary Martha and Eliza Poor Donner, who were survivors of
the infamous Donner Party who resorted to cannibalism in order to
- Henry Stedman Nourse
(1831-1903), grandson of
Polly Houghton, was the author of Lancasteria;
Lancaster MA VRs; and the Early Records of Lancaster, MA.
- Dr. John Wesley Houghton (1834-1924)
was the author of
the original Houghton Genealogy of 1912.
- Nathaniel Haughton (1834-1899) was
the founder, in
1890, of the Haughton Elevator Co. of Toledo, OH.
- Morgan Gardner Bulkeley (1837-1922),
Fannie Briggs Houghton, was a U.S. Senator; Governor of CT;
President of Aetna Insurance; and the first president of the National
- Dr. Henry Clarke Houghton, MD
was physician and professor of homeopathic
- Rev. Ross Clark Houghton, DD,
Lit.D.(1837-1904) was a
Methodist minister and author of multiple books.
- Louise Seymour Houghton (1838-1929)
was a prolific
author of religious and historical subjects and a pioneer settlement
- Thomas F. Houghton (1840-1903) was an
American architect who designed 10 Catholic Churches in NY and MA.
- David J. M. Houghton (1840-1923) was
a Union Army
private in the Civil war who survived as a prisoner at the infamous
Andersonville Prison in Georgia .
- Edward J. Houghton (1841-1865) was
Congressional Medal of Honor for a Civil War Naval action.
- George L. Houghton (1841-1917), a
Canadian born American, was
Congressional Medal of Honor for a Civil War action in IL; his brother
Daniel served in the Confederate Army.
- Bvt. Major Charles Henry Houghton
awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor during the Civil War and
was also arrested and fined for financial mismanagement as customs
collector at Perth Amboy in 1882.
- Stella Houghton Scott (1844-1928),
Stella Houghton. With husband, Arthur Gilman, was one of the
originators of the Society for College Instruction of Women, which they
helped develop into what was first called Harvard Annex, and which
finally became Radcliffe College.
- Louis Albert Houghton (1846-?)
graduated from Gallaudet
College and was a professor at the Tennessee School for the Deaf.
- Merritt Dana Houghton
(1846-1919) was a noted
- George Washington Wright Houghton
(1850-1891) was an
author and one of the incorporators of the society of Sons of the
Revolution, and was its second secretary.
- William Addison Houghton, MA
(1852-1917) was a
philologist, author, and Winkley professor of Latin, language and
literature Bowdoin College.
- Samuel Edgar Houghton (1852-1904) was
a circus dwarf
with Thumbiana & Lilliputian Opera Company. Known as Major Samuel
Edgar Houghton, he was 31 inches tall. He performed before Queen
- Edward Walker Houghton (1855-1927)
was an English born
Houghton who was a noted theater architect in the US.
- Frank Atherton Houghton (1855-?)
building of Commander Peary's North Pole ship, the "Roosevelt"
for the successful 1909 North Pole expedition.
- Charles Newell Houghton (1859-1922)
was a Winnebago
Native American (maternally), who lived with the Winnabagos on
their NE reservation most of his life, and authored multiple Native
American mythological tales.
- Albert Parker Houghton (1859-1944) was a rider a
marksman in Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show.
- Jesse Houghton Metcalf (1860-1942),
grandson of Eunice
Dench Houghton, was an industrialist, philanthropist, and United
States senator from RI.
- Marquis Mills Converse (1861-1931), a
descendant, founded the Converse Rubber Co., the eventual maker of
- Dr. Arthur D. Houghton (1861-1938), an English
born Houghton, who practiced medicine in CA, was one of 11 soldiers who
founded the American Legion in 1919.
- Charles David White (1862-1935),
husband of Mary
Elizabeth Houghton, was chief geologist of the US Geological Survey,
president of the Geological Society of America, and
an associate curator of paleobiology of the Smithsonian.
- Alanson Bigelow Houghton (1863-1941)
was was the chief
United States diplomat to Germany and the Ambassador Extraordinary and
Plenipotentiary to the Court of St. James's 1925-1929 (Britain) between
the World Wars and was the only Houghton ever to be on the cover of
- 1864 Civil War: Only 4 Houghtons were Union Army
prisoners at the infamous Andersonville Prison in Georgia: J. Houghton
of TN, Henry Houghton of IL, David J. M. Houghton of VT & IA, and
John Houghton of PA & OK
- Augustus Seymour Houghton (1866-1949)
was an American
lawyer and wildlife conservation leader.
- Arthur A. Houghton, Sr.
(1866–1928), son of Amory
Houghton Jr, was a former president of Corning Glass.
- Dr. Elijah Mark Houghton, MD, PhC
(1867-1937) was an
internationally known pharmacologist and bacteriologist, and a director
of medical research and biological labs of Parke, Davis & Co.
- Frederick M. Houghton (1869-1950) was
researcher of New York State, with multiple publications, and pioneered
English as a second language
teaching in the US and Canada.
- William J. Tully (1870–1930),
son-in-law of Amory
Houghton Jr.; father of philantrophist Alice Tully; New York State
Senator 1905 to 1908
- Edward Rittenhouse Houghton
(1871-1955) was a president
and chairman of the board of Houghton Mifflin Company.
- Dr. Harris Ayers Houghton, MD
(1874-1946) was a
physician, author, and Houghton genealogist, but also is known for
bringing about the English translation and publication in the US of the
infamous anti-Jewish fraudulent forgeries, the Protocols of the Elders
of Zion; one of the grossest and most damaging libels
- Percy G. Haughton (1876-1924) was a famous college
athlete and head football coach at Cornell University, Harvard
University, and Columbia University. He was inducted into the College
Football Hall of Fame in 1951.
- Katherine Martha
was a birth
control and Suffrage movement leader and mother of Katharine Hepburn,
the actress. She joined her friend Margaret Sanger in building the
American Birth Control League (today it is Planned Parenthood
Federation of America).
- Dr. Henry Spencer Houghton, MD
(1880-1975) was a
graduate of Johns Hopkins and a medical missionary to China where he
directed a number of medical schools. Was paleontologist Davidson
Black's superior at Peking Union Medical Center in
China and did not support his attempts to excavate the famous Homo erectus fossils at
Zhoukoudian, China. Played a major role in the loss of the original
Peking Homo erectus fossils
at beginning of WWII.
- Dr. Herbert Pierrepoint Houghton, PhD
received a doctorate in Greek and Sanskrit in 1907 from Johns Hopkins
and was a priest, philologist/professor of classical languages, and
president of Carroll College.
- Dr. Montafix Wilson Houghton, MD
(1880-1951) was a US
Public Health physician and surgeon.
- Tod Browning (1882-1962), husband of
Houghton, was the Hollywood director of the famous films Dracula (1930)
and Freaks (1932).
- William Morris Houghton (1882-1960)
was an journalist
and editor for the New York Herald Tribune.
- Dr. James Tilly Houghton, MD
(1885-1931) graduated from
Harvard Medical School, was a physician, and survived the sinking
of the RMS Lusitania on May 7, 1915.
- Phillip Allen Houghton (1887-?) was
founder of Houghton
Chemical Company, whose president is now his grandson Bruce E.
- Earnest Albert Hooton (1887-1954) was First
American professor of physical anthropologist at Harvard
- Rev. Dr. William Henry Houghton
(1887-1947) was Baptist
minister, author, and 20th President of Moody Bible Institute.
- Dr. Sidney Henry Haughton (1888-1982), and English
born geologist and paleontologist, was one of the greatest geologist of
- Junius Henry Houghton (1892-1980) was
a graduate of
West Point and a Brigadier General in USAF.
- Ernest Baker Houghton (1893-1941)
played basketball for
Union College, NY in 1914-1915 and was awarded The Helms Foundation
College Basketball Player of the Year and was
eventually inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame.
- Lt. Arthur Reginald Houghton
(1893-1925), was an
English born US Navy aviator who lost his life in the crash of the
Shenandoah, the first dirigible built in the US.
- Mansfield Freeman (1895-1992),
husband of Mary Louise
Houghton, was one of the founders of American International Group
(AIG) insurance and a noted Chinese scholar.
- Amory Houghton, Sr (1899-1981) was
Corning, Inc., US ambassador to France, 1957-1961, and was a
National President of the Boy Scouts of America.
- Ruth E. Houghton (1899-1967) was the
president of a mutual fund in the US for decades; she and her husband
Emerson Wirt Axe, both well-known economists, formed E. W.
Axe & Co., and managed four Axe-Houghton mutual funds.
- William Henry Ernest Houghton
(1900-1976) was a
president of the Muzak Corp.
- Alice Bigelow Tully (1902-1993),
granddaughter of Amory
Houghton Jr., a professional mezzo-soprano singer and philantrophist.
Funded the Alice Tully Hall, a 1000 seat chamber music hall of
- Lessing Lanham Engelking (1902-1980),
husband of Hess
Pringle Houghton, was the legendary city editor of the New York Hearld
Tribune for 39 years.
- Dr. Walter Edwards Houghton, Jr, PhD
(1904-1983) was a
professor at both Harvard University and Wellesley College and a noted
Victorian period scholar.
- Marshall Loring McClanahan
(1904-1990), son of Ethel
Maria Houghton, wrote the second most comprehensive Houghton Genealogy
- Dr. Henry Garrett Houghton
the chairman of Meterology Dept. of MIT for 35 years and a
president of the American Meterological Society.
- Arthur A. Houghton, Jr.
former president of Steuben Glass Co., a former division of Corning
Glass. Harvard University's Houghton Hall was named after him. In 1957
Fortune magazine place him in a list of the 76 wealthiest
Americans; his estimated worth was $800 million to $1.6 billion. Over
its 150-year history Corning invented a process for rapid and
inexpensive production of light bulbs, including developing the glass
for Thomas Edison's light bulb. It was an early major manufacturer of
glass panels and funnels for television tubes. Corning invented and
produced Pyrex, CorningWare, Pyroceram glass-ceramic cookware, and
Corelle durable glass dinnerware. Corning manufactured the windows for
U.S. manned space vehicles, and supplied the glass blank for the
primary mirror in the Hubble Space Telescope.
- Katherine Houghton Hepburn
(1907-2003) was the noted
American actress; she is in the John Houghton line. The only winner of
academy awards, all for Best Actress.
- Charles Norris Houghton (1909-2001)
was a noted
Broadway stage director, author, and teacher.
- Dr. Karl Herbert Houghton, MD
the Bataan Death March in WWII and was on the Atomic Energy Commission.
- Daniel Jeremiah Haughton (1911-1987)
was president of
Lockheed Aircraft Corporation.
- Edith Grace Houghton (1912-2003) was
prodigy, playing professional baseball from the age of 10 in 1922. She
was the first woman Major League baseball scout and is in the Baseball
Hall of Fame.
- Robert Allen Houghton (193-1997) was
LAPD Ass. Chief of
Police and author who investigated assassination of Robert Kennedy and
Charles Manson murders.
- Archibald (Buck) Houghton (1915-1999)
was an American
TV and film producer; produced Rod Sterling's Twilight Zone TV series.
- Ronald W. Haughton (1916-2005) was a noted
Canadian American labor mediator whose long career included mediating a
dispute between the United Farm Workers and a major California grape
grower in the 1960s and serving as chairman of the Federal Labor
Relations Authority during the air-traffic controllers' strike in the
- Proctor Willis Houghton (1916-2012)
was the president
of Houghton Chemical Company.
- Donald Bruce Houghton (1917-1990) was
mathematician and computer specialist.
- Firman Andrews Houghton (1919-1985)
was one of New
England's best- known poets and playwrights.
- Major General Kenneth John Houghton
(1920-2006) was a
Marine Corp legend, distinguishing himself in three wars, in some of
the most important campaigns in Marine Corps history.
- Mary Alice Murphy (1921-2002), wife
of Junius Henry
Houghton, Jr, was a chemist who worked on the Manhattan Project and
witnessed first atomic bomb blast.
- William R. Haughton (1923-1986) was
one of the great
horse harness race drivers.
- Charles Henry Houghton, Jr.
(1924-2000) was an attorney
and former Army colonel credited with capturing Nazi war criminals
after World War II,
- Frederick Waldo Latrash (1925-2002),
Patricia Houghton, a daughter of Henry Oscar Houghton III, was a CIA
operative; a station chief in Chile (1971-1973) during overthrow
and assassination of democratically elected Salvador Allende.
- Florence Elaine Marshall (née
(1925-) is a
major genealogical author of Kalb Co., IL.
- Dr. Raymond Warren Houghton, PhD
(1926-2010) was a
noted professor of education of Rhode Island College and Trinity
College, Dublin, Ireland .
- Gerald Haines Houghton
(1926-2002) was an
American football offensive tackle in the National Football League for
the Washington Redskins and the Chicago Cardinals. He was drafted in
the seventh round of the 1950 NFL Draft and played 14 games.
- Dr. Arthur Vincent Houghton III, PhD
(1926-1992) was a
professor of mechanic engineering at University of New Mexico.
- Amory Houghton Jr (1926-) was
president of Corning,
Inc., and a member of the US House of Representatives, 1987-2005.
- Benjamin Thomas Houghton (1935-2001)
was a founder
of Enidine, formerly known as Integrated Dynamics.
- James Richardson Houghton (1936-) is
the retired CEO
and Chairman of the Board of Corning Inc.
- Dr. David Drew Houghton (1938-) is a
noted professor of meterology, author, and ex-president of
the American Meterological Society.
- Dr. Edward Francis Houghton (1938-)
noted UCSF professor emeritus, Dept of Music, and was Dean of the
Division of Arts, UCSC.
- Charles Lavelle Houghton Sr
(1941-2003) received the
2002 award for the world's largest giant pumpkin; 1337 pounds. He
is in the 2004 Guiness Book of World Records.
- Dr. George Gerald Houghton, ThD
(1941-) and Dr. Myron
James Houghton, Ph.D., ThD (1941-) are twin brothers who are both
Baptist ministers and theology professors.
- Mary A. Houghton (1942-) serves
as the President
of the ShoreBank Corporation.
- Dr. Richard Arnold Houghton III, PhD
(1943-) is a
senior ecology scientist at the Woods Hole Research Center, an expert
on the global carbon cycle and was part of Intergovernmental
Panel on Climate Change in 2007 that won the Nobel Prize with ex-vice
president Al Gore.
- Dr. Alan Nourse Houghton, Jr., MD
is a cancer immunology professor and researcher at the Sloan
Kettering Cancer Center.
- James Houghton (1948-) is an American
actor and writer.
He has appeared on The Young and the Restless and Knots Landing.
- Dr. Charlotte Marie Houghton, PhD
(1950-) is an art
history professor at Penn State University.
- William Douglas Houghton (1951-)
worked for the FBI for
30 years as a senior Intelligence Analyst who identified Russian and
- Dr. John William Houghton, PhD
(1953-) is a
prize-winning medieval historian with degrees from Harvard, Yale,
Indiana and Notre Dame universities. He is an Episcopal minister,
medieval scholar, and Tolkien expert.
- Mundy Hepburn (1955-), grandson of
Houghton, is an American artist who designs and builds glass sculptures
filled with luminous electrified inert gases
- Kris Khardasian (née
(1955-) is ex-wife of
Robert Khardasian, O.J. Simpson's trial lawyer, and wife of Bruce
Jenner, of Olympic fame, and an American celebrity, author and reality
television personality (Keeping Up
With the Kardashians)
- James Houghton (1958-) is the
director of the New York's Signature Theater, and the Richard Rodgers
Director of the Drama Division at
the Juilliard School.
- Michael William Houghton (1959-) was murdered in
1987 by Scott Hain, who was 17 at the time. Hain was last person ever
executed in the United States for crimes committed as a minor in 2003.
- Radcliffe Franklin Haughton
(1966-2012) was a Jamaican
born U.S. mass
murderer, having committed a murder-suicide, shooting 7 women and
killing 3 and himself.
- Schuyler Grant (1971-), great niece
Katherine Hepburn, is an American actress best known for supporting
roles in television and is studio director at the New York Kula Yoga
- Israel D. Houghton (1979-)
American Christian music singer.
- Aaliyah Dana Haughton (1979-2001) was
American musical rock star.
- Laura Mersini-Houghton (née Mersini)
?) is a cosmologist and theoretical physicist, and associate professor
at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has developed
(together with collaborators) a theory for the birth of the universe
from the landscape multiverse that included five predictions proposed
in 2006, four of which have since been observed.
- Daniel Houghton is the executive
director of NC2 Media,
which recently purchased the Lonely Planet guidebook company for $77
Use citation "Houghton
Surname Project, authored and compiled by Charles J. Vella, PhD"
- Christopher Colin Houghton (1988-)
and Shane Michael
Houghton (1985-), brothers, are Indie Comic
book authors of Reed Gunther
the Steak-Snacking Snake
- David Houghton is president of National Wildlife