Source for Birth: [Massachusetts Births and Christenings, 1639-1915 (database online; FamilySearch.org)], son of Benjamin Hallowell the Boston shipbuilder and Rebecca Briggs. His great grandfather William Hallowell had immigrated from probably Devonshire, England in c1648-1652. He was the father of Admiral Sir Benjamin Hallowell Carew, who fought under Lord Nelson.
The Hallowell family had originally come from England and settled in Boston where Benjamin Hallowell became a Commissioner of Customs at the port. At the outbreak of the War of Independence he and his family, as loyalists, were proscribed and banished, his estate in Roxbury and his property in Maine, seized. Accompanied by the British army, in March 1776, the Hallowells and over 900 other loyalists left Boston for Halifax. Later that year the family moved back to England. In 1796 Captain Hallowell returned to Boston with his daughter Mary, now Mrs. John Elmsley, whose husband had recently been appointed Chief Justice of Upper Canada. Shortly after this he decided to settle in York with his daughter and son-in-law. At the time of his death he was in possession of a significant amount of land in and around the town. He owned lots 23 and 24 on King Street, just west of Elmsley House, and a substantial park lot which ran from the 2nd concession road (Bloor) to the 1st (Queen) on the west side of modern Dufferin Street. This land had been granted to him by the British Government to compensate for all he had lost in his devotion to the loyalist cause.