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Howard Stark (Earth-616)

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Quote1 Son, your school tests may prove you're a genius, but you act like an idiot! Quote2
-- Howard Stark src

Early Life

Howard Stark was born and raised in Richford, New York the son of Howard Stark, Sr. He grew there with his brother Edward Stark. He was a brilliant Engineer and Industrialist. He and his own father worked on various projects, and later founded Stark Industries.[3]


During World War II and after, he worked on various government projects. These included the Manhattan Project and housing the 'Arsenal' robots in a hidden subbasement in his mansion. The robots were only supposed to be activated if the US was overrun during a presumed Cold War conflict, but both known models have been accidentally awakened and stopped by the Avengers.[4]

The Red Skull abducted Howard and his then wife, and tortured him to gain information about the Manhattan Project. They were later rescued by Captain America and the Howling Commandos.[5]

S.H.I.E.L.D. Vol 1 5 Stark & Richards Variant Textless

Brotherhood of the Shield

After WWII, Howard was approached by a mysterious organization called the Brotherhood of the Shield who had appointed themselves the protectors of Earth. The group had protected the human race from threats for centuries. Back in 1953, just after the death of Joseph Stalin, the leader of the Soviet Union, two prominent S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, billionaire industrialist Howard Stark and scientist Dr. Nathaniel Richards, recruited a mysterious young man named Leonid who possessed amazing superhuman powers. They took the powerful young man to the Brotherhood of the Shield High Council in the Immortal City under Rome. The High Council made them aware of "The Final Fate of Man", and appointed themselves the task of protecting the Earth until that event. They revealed to Leonid his destiny to help in their endeavor.[6]

Leonid meets Leonardo da Vinci, who has apparently traveled through time to use his device to save the world. Da Vinci's return was met with resistance from Isaac Newton who saw it as a threat to his reign as leader of the organization. This eventually leads to the organization splitting into two factions; one led by Newton and one led by Da Vinci. Stark, Richards and Night Machine travel to the Immortal City and try to stop the two battling factions by putting the decision of leadership in to Leonid's hand on whom is right, he chooses Da Vinci over Newton, while he escapes in to the future.[7]

Woodrow McCord Jr. (Earth-616) meets Howard Stark (Earth-616) and Margaret Carter (Earth-616) from Operation S.I.N. Vol 1 1

Original Sin

During the investigation of the Watcher's murder, it was revealed that Howard worked with Woody McCord and helped in the job of protecting the Earth.[8]

An alien ship landed in Siberia in 1952.[9] This brought the attention of Earth's defenders McCord and Stark. Believing that this strange presence to be a threat, McCord sought to eliminate it as he did all other invaders of his world. [10] Ebon Seeker had already discovered her location thanks to Howard Stark who had activated Shareen's spaceship. He used the portal to reach Earth once more, but as the portal was damaged, he became stuck in it. [7] Working with Peggy Carter, they stopped Hydra from stealing the ship by working with the inhabitant to defeat them. The alien stayed with Vanko in Russia as Carter, Howard and McCord returned to the United States of America.[11]

However following the death of McCord during the fight against the Tribellians, Howard decided to bring in CIA agent Nick Fury. Together over the next years, they would secretly fight various threats, from Subterranean Monsters to extra-dimensional beings.[12]

In 1959, as Nick Fury and the Blonde Phantom traveled to Wakanda, the pair are given information that should lead them to General Skul, borrowing Howard Stark's hydrofoil to get there as quickly as possible.[13]

Hellfire Club (Earth-616) from X-Men Hellfire Club Vol 1 4

"Hellfire Club"

Hellfire Club

He was a contemporary of many other powerful businessmen such as Warren Worthington II, John Braddock and Sebastian Shaw. Membership to the exclusive Hellfire Club was offered, but it seems Howard was uninterested in anything other than the lavish parties the club threw.[14]

Meeting Maria

Howard bought a lavish hotel/casino. He saw a woman trying to deliberately lose lots of money at baccarat. She's also trying to avoid two men, who take her to a limousine containing Obadiah Stane. Howard tried to intervene but the woman said everything's fine and they drive off. Howard didn't believe her and got the staff to track Stane down. He learned that Stane was actually staying in his hotel. He went to his room and chats up the woman, until Stane's bodyguards arrive. Howard and the woman knocked out a guard each, and escape.Hotel staff turned up and ask Stane to leave the hotel. Howard and the woman drive off, introducing herself as Maria Carbonell.[15]

Iron Man Vol 5 10 page 13 Textless

"Stark Seven"

The birth of Arno Stark

Howard later married Maria but they had problems when gestating the child of Howard's. After being told his child might not survive, Howard searched around the world for a way to cure his unborn child.[16] He met with Nathaniel and Leonid and even the High Evolutionary and a representative of the Seven Capital Cities of Heaven but to no avail. However he assembled the Stark Seven; Jimmy Woo, The Bear, Nessa the Kitnte, Dum-Dum Dugan, Thunderbolt Ross and Rollo. They were brought together to kidnap Rigellian Recorder; Recorder 451 but found himself rescuing the from the alien race known as the Greys, who promised him he would help Stark and his wife to get their child.[17] Stark later reassembled the team in order to kill the boss of the Greys and force his thugs to abandon Earth in order to preserve the safety of Howard's child.[18]

Howard Stark (Earth-616) from Iron Man Vol 5 9

Recording left for Tony

451 came to Earth in order to stop the Greys from crushing humanity to a pulp as soon as the Earthlings were technologically developed enough. 451 revealed the Greys' intention to Howard, and told him he would need to insert someone in humanity to accelerate the human's technological growth for the moment they would need to face the Greys, and Stark's unborn child was the perfect candidate. 451 genetically engineered the baby with Kree technology to make him one who would uplift humanity, modifying his thought process, making him to think differently and practically, in order to be an expert in advanced weaponry construction. Howard discovered 451 had added a "genetic clock" to the baby which would've killed him when he matured, and developed a biococktail to interfere with it. The baby was born, but Howard's interference made him ill. He and Maria decided to keep the baby hidden in the Maria Stark Foundation Hospice and adopt a healthy son, as they couldn't conceive a new baby, to prevent 451 from discovering Howard's meddling. The adoptive son was Tony Stark.[19]

Tony would not learn the truth about his adoption until he was an adult, following an adventure in space during which he fought the Recorder 451.[19]


He hired Edwin Jarvis as his butler and valet. He became a trusted adviser and helped Maria raise Tony.[citation needed]

Tony Stark's Childhood

Howard Stark (Earth-616) 0001

He had a difficult relationship with his son Tony sending him to boarding school at six, much to the sadness of Maria.[20] But he excelled like Howard in all aspects of engineering and science. It is later revealed that Howard was an alcoholic both verbally abusive to his wife and son.[21] It was Howard who forced Tony to have him first drink.[22] He was proud of his son but never told him when he became and undergraduate at MIT at the age of 15, where he majored in physics and electrical engineering.[23] However the relationship soured further when Tony's in his 20's rebelled further becoming shiftless a playboy adventurer. Howard would often berate him because of this[24]

Howard tried to teach Tony many lessons such as the costs of waging war, [25] and also that he must clean up his own messes.[26]

Howard Stark (Earth-616) 2

Meredith McCall, the daughter of Creighton McCall Howard's greatest rival, fell in love with Tony but their parents forbade them from ever seeing each other again.[24]

Tony dated another girl, Cassandra Gillespie, who was the daughter of another of Howard's business rivals.[27] Howard took him back to America and scolded him for being involved with the daughter of his competitors, believing that she was using him.[28]

Ides of March

On the Ides of March, Howard and Maria were killed in a car accident. It has been hinted that the incident was not random accident but a planned assassination. Many suspects have been named such as the V-Battalion,[29] Roxxon[30] and Hydra.[citation needed] However Howard Stark said to Nathaniel Richards soon after joining the Brotherhood of the Shield that the Brotherhood would fake his death by car accident, calling his deceased status into question.[31]


Genius Intelligence: Howard Stark, like his son is an inventive mechanical engineering prodigy, constantly creating new technology and looking for ways to improve it. His intelligence is classed as above genius and he has been recruited into various groups and organizations due to his contributions in the fields of technology and weapons development.[32]

Expert Engineer: He is an excellent engineer and mechanic capable designing and building weaponry and devices that have revolutionized the industrial world. He has helped develop various technologies used by S.H.I.E.L.D. and its allies.[32]

Expert Businessman: Howard Stark is extremely well-respected in the business world, able to command people's attentions when he speaks on economic matters by virtue of the fact that he is savvy enough to have, over the years, built up several multimillion dollar companies from virtually nothing. He is known for the loyalty he commands from and returns to those who work for him, as well as his impeccable business ethics. He has various government contracts stemming from his companies creation of weapons, which have helped defend the US.[32]

Skilled Pilot: he was one of the best civilian pilots in the world. He is skilled in the use of multiple types of aircraft and has flown many aircraft of his own design.[13]

Strength level

Howard Stark exercised regularly and was in good shape.

Discover and Discuss


  1. S.H.I.E.L.D. Vol 2 #1
  2. Iron Man #322
  3. Spider-Man Family #8
  4. Iron Man #257
  5. Captain America Annual #9
  6. S.H.I.E.L.D. #1-6
  7. 7.0 7.1 S.H.I.E.L.D. Vol 2 #1-4
  8. Original Sin Annual #1
  9. Operation S.I.N. #4
  10. Operation S.I.N. #1-2
  11. Operation S.I.N. #5
  12. Original Sin #5
  13. 13.0 13.1 Avengers 1959 #3
  14. X-Men: Hellfire Club #4
  15. Invincible Iron Man #503
  16. Iron Man Vol 5 #9
  17. Iron Man Vol 5 #10-11
  18. Iron Man Vol 5 #12
  19. 19.0 19.1 Iron Man Vol 5 #17
  20. Iron Man #287
  21. Iron Man #285-286
  22. Invincible Iron Man #500.1
  23. Iron Man #288
  24. 24.0 24.1 Iron Man #28
  25. Invincible Iron Man #505
  26. Invincible Iron Man #517
  27. International Iron Man #1
  28. International Iron Man #2
  29. 29.0 29.1 Citizen V and the V-Battalion #1
  30. Iron Man: The Iron Age #1
  31. S.H.I.E.L.D. #5
  32. 32.0 32.1 32.2 Iron Manual Mark 3 #1
  33. Iron Manual Mark 3 #1
  34. Iron Manual Mark 3 #1

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