Richardson, John (1667-1753) (DNB00)

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search

RICHARDSON, JOHN (1667–1753), quaker, son of William Richardson (1624–1679) of North Cave, Yorkshire, was born there in 1667. The father, who joined the quakers on hearing Fox and Dewsbury preach, was often fined and imprisoned.

The lad, after solitary wanderings, became a convinced quaker when only sixteen. He managed a grazing farm for his mother and five children, but, on her remarriage with a presbyterian, was turned out of the house. He began preaching at eighteen, having bound himself to a weaver, but after an illness he devoted all his time to itinerant preaching, and before he was twenty-seven had travelled four times all over England and twice through Wales. He settled in Bridlington, and married Priscilla Canaby, by whom he had five children. In November 1700 he sailed for America. Arrived in Maryland, he procured ‘a little white horse’ which carried him over four thousand miles. He stayed at Pennsbury with William Penn [q. v.], was present at a council with Indians, disputed publicly with George Keith [q. v.] at Lynn, near Boston, met Thomas Story [q. v.] on Long Island, and in Maryland preached before the governor and his wife, Lord and Lady Baltimore. Upon his return to Yorkshire, about 1703, he married as his second wife Anne Robinson, a Yorkshire woman of good family. She died in 1711, and Richardson travelled to Ireland and again to America in 1731. He died at Hutton-in-the-Hole, Yorkshire, on 2 June 1753, and was buried at Kirby-Moorside.

Richardson's journal, ‘An Account of the Life of that Ancient Servant of Christ,’ &c., appeared in London, 1757, 8vo (6th ed. 12mo. 1843; Friends' Library, Philadelphia, 1840, iv.). Although he met and disputed with all creeds, his book speaks harshly of none.

[Smith's Cat. ii. 485; Wight's Quakers in Ireland, 1751; Collection of Testimonies, 1760, pp. 143–5.]

C. F. S.