This column is part of a feature series which focuses on a different Centre County family each week. Five new columns will be released each month unless some technical difficulty enters the picture.
This column's focus is on Richards. An effort has been made to identify all persons carrying that name in the 1890 U.S. Census, using the Centre County business directory which was formed from a preliminary review of that census before the larger set of 1890 U.S. Census records was destroyed by fire. (Sadly, the postal directory does not typically provide the ages of females, but it's the best record we've got).
Three books in the Pennsylvania Room of the Centre County Library in Bellefonte apparently deal with the Richards family. They are Maribel Hildebrand's work, Margaret Kinsey's Ball Cousins: Descendants of John and Sarah Ball and of William and Elizabeth Richards of Colonial Philadelphia Co., Penna. (1981), and David Richards' David Alexander Richards 1863 & Cecilia Esther Spotts, Ella Mae Richards 1903-1975 & Arthur S. Erickson, Lee Oscar Richards 1906 & Edith Roena Shope, Minnie Francis Richards 1908-1995 & Allen Perley Herritt (1997).
There are 32 different first-name entries for Richards family in John Blair Linn's History of Centre and Clinton County (1883). In addition, there are many references to the name in Beers' Commemorative Biographical Record of Central Pennsylvania (1898) but no one by that name having a full-length profile.
And, now, your ancestors' RICHARDS neighbors in 1890:
In BELLEFONTE Borough:
Frederick C., 63, jeweler--150 E. Linn Isabella Charles F. 31
In CENTRE HALL Borough:Moses B., 49, carpenter Rebecca S. Kate
In HAINES Township:Benjamin, 34--Coburn
In HUSTON Towsnhip:David, 35, farmer--Martha Sarah Elizabeth William S. 13 Budd J. 9 Samuel T. 6 George N. 4 Newton S. 6 mos. Hannah--Martha Maggie--Julian Milliken, 49, laborer--Julian Frances David 17 Edward 15 William 12 Reuben W., 40, farmer--Julian Alina Rollen R. 23 Morgan 21 Benjamin 19
In MILES Township:Charles W. Richard, 9 mos.--Rebersburg
In PHILIPSBURG Borough:Alfred W., 45--7th St. Sarah J. Susan J. Bessie W. John C. 4 Alfred C. David, 38, laborer--3rd St. Addie Grace George H., 34, laborer--3rd St. Mary Howard H. 8 Iva C. Hannah--Spruce St. Matilda--3rd St. Susan--Spruce St. Ellie
In RUSH Township:John E., 29, shoemaker--Philipsburg Martha M. Theodore B., 54, farmer--Philipsburg Amanda H. William H. 28 Rachel J. Edward J. 16
In TAYLOR Twonship:Pius S. Richard, 32, farmer--Port Matilda Laura Walter 10 Grace Maud Thomas 4 Martha
In UNION Township:John C., 34, laborer--Fleming Lydia A. George 6 Margery 7 mos.
In WORTH Township:Catharine--Port Matilda Warren 29 William, 28, farmer--Port Matilda Alis Jesse 8 Robert 6 Anna Blanchard 2 Henry 11 Winnie--Port Matilda Mary Abbie Charles 1