Biography of William Richards
Marion County, IA Biographies





WILLIAM RICHARDS.
On the list of Marion county's pioneer settlers appears the name of William Richards, who passed away November 21, 1901, at the home of his son Joshua, of whom mention is made on another page of this work. He was born in Bedford county, Pennsylvania, July 19, 1811, a son of William and Ann (Rose) Richards. The father was born November 27, 1781, and his life record covered the intervening period to the t3th of December, 1857. He served as a soldier in the Mexican war. The mother was born September 18, 1784, and died August 29, 1853. By trade William Richards, Sr., was a shoemaker. To him and his wife were born nine children, namely: John, Rachel, William, Jr., Juliann, Josiah, Samuel, Melinda, Ruann and Selena.

William Richards accompanied his parents on their removal from the Keystone state to Coshocton county, Ohio, in his boyhood days. He was there reared and married, Miss Margery Thompson becoming his wife on the 23d of December, 1830. She was born May 7, 1808, in Bedford county, Pennsylvania, a daughter of Joshua Thompson, whose wife died during the early girlhood of their daughter Margery. Upon leaving Ohio Mr. and Mrs. Richards removed to Wabash county, Indiana, and there resided for about three years or until the fall of 1856, when they came to Marion county, Iowa. Mr. Richards was a farmer by occupation and his life was a busy and useful one which in the course of years brought him a very gratifying and substantial measure of success. As his financial resources increased he kept adding to his property until his holdings aggregated nine hundred acres of rich and valuable farming land in Pleasant Grove and Swan townships. This he successfully cultivated and his property interest brought to him a gratifying measure of success as the years passed on.

Mrs. Richards passed away January i8, 1899, and the death of Mr. Richards occurred November 21, 1901. Their married life covered a period of more than sixty eight years and their mutual love and confidence increased as time passed on and they met together the joys and sorrows, the adversity and the prosperity that checkered their lives. They were baptized and joined the Christian church in 1840 and they were thereafter consistent members until they were called to the home beyond. Mr. Richards was also a member of the Masonic fraternity from early manhood. To him and his wife were born ten children, as follows: Eleanor, whose birth occurred October 14, 1831, and who died in Indiana in young womanhood; Ann Jane, who was born January 30, 1833, gave her hand in marriage to David Forst and is now deceased; William T., born May 27, 1835, who resides near Bozeman, Montana; Joshua T., a sketch of whom appears on another page of this work; Samuel V., whose birth occurred January 8, 1839, and who died in Indiana in young manhood; Juliann, born April 1, 1841, who became the wife of Harmon Caffrey and has passed away; Josiah, born July 4, 1843, who died while serving as a soldier of the Union army in the Civil war; John, a sketch of whom is given on another page of this work; James Allen, whose birth occurred October 4, 1847, and who is a resident of Pleasantville, Iowa; and Urias, born September to, 1849, who resides in Oklahoma.

William Richards gave his political indorsement to the Whig party after age conferred upon him the right of franchise and when that party ceased to exist he joined the ranks of the new republican party. His worth and ability were widely recognized by his fellow townsmen and he was frequently called to public office, serving as mayor of Pleasantville for several years. He was prominent and influential as a supporter and promoter of churches and schools and was very active as a member of the Christian church. Both he and his wife lived to be more than ninety years of age and for a long period were the oldest couple of the county, having traveled life's journey together for more than sixty eight years ere separated by the hand of death. Every phase of frontier life was familiar to them and they bore an active and helpful part in the work of general development. Their influence was ever on the side of right, progress, reform and improvement and their memory is cherished by all who knew them and remains as a blessed benediction to their friends.

From:
History of Marion County, Iowa
And its People
John W. Wright, Supervising Editor
W. A. Young, Associate
Vol II
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Chiago 1915


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