ROBERT NELSON RICHARDSON GRAVESTONE PHOTO
The Altoona Tribune, Thursday, Aug. 5, 1914.
Died: August 2, 1914.
ANOTHER WILSON COUNTY
R. N. Richardson died at his home in Altoona, Kansas, at 1 o’clock A. M. Sunday, August 2nd, 1914, aged 74 years, 11 months and 7 days. Funeral services were held at the Presbyterian church Monday, August 3rd, at 3 o’clock P. M., conducted by the pastor, Rev. W. B. Minton. Interment was in the Altoona cemetery. Mr. Richardson had been confined to his home for several days and continued to grow worse. The cause of his death being paralysis. He was one of Altoona’s oldest citizens and was respected by everyone. Mr. and Mrs. Richardson celebrated their Golden wedding anniversary about five years ago. The deceased was actively engaged in the banking business here for a great many years, organizing the Citizens State Bank of this city in 1886, retiring from the bank about nine years ago. Mr. Richardson has been failing in health for sometime, but his condition was not considered serious till last week, and owing to his advanced age his recovery was impossible. Mr. Richardson was a good man in every respect and one of our best citizens. At all times, under all circumstances he walked in the well beaten path of righteousness. He lived a long and useful life and died respected by all.
Robert Nelson Richardson was born in Harrison county, West Virginia, August 26th, 1839. His father was William H. Richardson, born in Charles county, Maryland, January 1st, 1817, and his mother before marriage was Elizabeth E. Sandy, a native of Virginia. His ancestors on both sides were Virginians and Marylanders, both grandfathers, James Richardson and William Sandy, being soldiers in the war of 1812 and the families being among the early colonial settlers. Wm. Richardson formerly lived in Altoona, he died about eight or nine years ago.
Robert Nelson Richardson was the eldest of a family of five children born to William H. and Elizabeth Richardson, the others being Emily Q., who was married to Robert Cunningham and died in Wilson county, Kansas, in 1877; Alva P. who died six years ago in Altoona; Marshall E. and Louisa, wife of Peter Lown, of Omaha.
Robert Nelson Richardson was raised on a farm. On December 16th, 1858, he was united in marriage with Margaret L. Crim, a schoolmate and a daughter of John and Ruth Crim, who were natives of West Virginia. Mrs. R. N. Richardson died July 5th 1909. On the 16th of August 1862 Mr. Richardson entered the Union Army, enlisting in Company H. Captain Henry M. Ice, 14th West Virginia Volunteer Infantry which he was in several battles, some of which was the battle of Cloyd’s Mountain, on the East Tennessee & Virginia Railroad, May 9th, 1864. Later his command dropped down to Lynchburg, where on June 17th and 18th, 1864, it met the Confederates under “Stonewall” Jackson and fought one of the severest engagements of the war. A few days after this battle while his company was marching across Big and Little Swell Mountains, Mr. Richardson sprained a muscle in his leg from which he suffered a great deal but continued in active service up to the fight at Carter’s Farm, near Winchester, where July 20th, 1864, he received a wound which made him a cripple for life. A musket ball struck the tibia of his left leg two inches below the knee and removed two inches of that bone. He was confined in a hospital near Cumberland, Maryland, July 24th, 1864, and remained there till May 12, 1865, at which time he was discharged from the service. Mr. Richardson was elected to many public offices in West Virginia, serving as constable, assessor and deputy postmaster. In 1869 he moved to Hancock county, Illinois, where he engaged in the boot and shoe business at Elviston for two years. Then in February 1871 he came to Kansas and settled in Wilson County, buying the northwest quarter of section 3—29—16 on which he located and where he lived till 1899, when he moved to Altoona. It will not be necessary to say of Mr. Richardson as one of the early settlers of Wilson county that he underwent the hardships and privations of those early years. The date of his settling here and the fact that he has resided here for the last forty-four years coupled with the further fact that he was a crippled Ex-Federal soldier with very limited means would imply all of that. Perhaps when so many were selling out and returning east he would have done so too if he had had the means, but he did not, it was just as well for him that he did not. His deeded quarter expanded into a valuable well improved farm, he soon acquired other property and at the time of his death was one of the wealthiest citizens. While Mr. Richardson was always a plain man of business he had nevertheless been before the public in some capacity or other almost all his life. He was two terms justice of the peace of his township; has been a notary public for many years; cried sales for a number of years in Kansas, Illinois and West Virginia; was postmaster at Altoona for two years and a half, being such when that office was made a money order office and issued the first money order from the same and was chairman of the Republican central committee of Wilson county in 1898-1899. He was a Mason and filled all the positions in the Blue Lodge and has represented his lodge in the grand lodge many times. The lodge he loved so well had charge of his funeral. He was a devoted member of the Presbyterian church and contributed much to the maintenance of the Altoona church. He had been an elder of the church for more than a quarter of a century and has attended the Kansas Presbytery a number of times and had been sent as a delegate to the General Assembly. Mr. Richardson leaves five sons and one daughter, Mrs. Alice Connell, A. M. Richardson, Melvin Richardson, and Gordon Richardson, of Altoona, and Erwin and Walter Richardson of Victorville, California. The foregoing is in brief the life record of one who has had an exceptionally active, varied and successful career and who while profiting well by his long residence and arduous labors in the county, filled to the full, the measure of a good citizen.