The House of Commons, considering a bill concerning prison conditions, thanked Howard for providing information about the state of prisons.
Black letter was a dense, pointed type that carried the weight of traditional authority. Roman type was a newer type with an aroma of heresy.
Two Howard biographers state that Howard simplified the prison acts of 1774 when he had them printed for posting in prisons throughout England.
John Aikin influenced and admired Howard’s prison examinations. Aikin also helped to draft and revise The State of the Prisons.
John Densham apparently wrote from Howard’s manuscripts a first draft of The State of the Prisons.
R.W. England argues convincingly that sectarian tensions explain John Howard’s sole nominal authorship of The State of the Prisons.
The State of the Prisons in England and Wales was published in quarto early in 1777.
John Howard’s personal friendships connected him to prominent eighteenth-century public figures, particularly those outside of the Church of England.
John Howard’s obituary in Gentleman’s Magazine (April, 1790) included facts and criticisms that angered Howard’s friends and generated responding letters.
John Howard, who came to be called the philanthropist, had few near family members.