James Richmond was born at Sandstone, at Richmond Falls on the New River on January 19, 1823. His grandfather, William Richmond (born in Pennsylvania, 1752, died in Fayette County, WV 1850) was a veteran of the American Revolutionary War. He was also the first settler in the New River Gorge, just upstream from the present-day I-64 Bridge at Sandstone. His log cabin still stands on the west bank of the river and is still occupied as a dwelling.
William was three times married. His first wife, Mary, bore him nine children and died in 1807. He thereafter married Margaret Bragg and, in 1849, Rebecca Atkins. Among William’s nine children was the father of James, also named William (1786 – 1860), who married Mary Christian Kayler (Koehler). James Richmond married Lucinda Walker c. 1843. Lucinda probably was reared on Lick Creek on the Greenbrier County side of the New River. To this union 11 children were born:
John (1845-1847); James C. (1848-1898); Harvey T. (1849-1916); Rachel (1852-1862); Ballard (1854-1923); Ruthy (1858-1881); Silvira (1861-1938 ); Robert (1864 –1873); William D. (1866-1867); Oliver (1859-1960); and Lucinda Ellen (1872-1960). Lucinda Ellen became the wife of George W. Bair, Jr. In 1850, James acquired a farm at Little Beaver in Raleigh County and lived out his life there.
James died on Saturday, May 25, 1911. The Raleigh Register of June 1, 1911 announced his death thusly: “ One of the Oldest and Best Know Citizens of Raleigh County...died at the home of his daughter Mrs. George W. Bair [ N. Kanawha Street, Beckley]. Thirty-one grandchildren and 35 great-grandchildren survived him. James served in the army of the Confederacy throughout the Civil War.” He was a Democrat and the Register reported “until recently had always taken part in party affairs, being regarded as one of the ablest counselors of his party”.
He was buried at the Ewart Cemetery in Shady Springs District, Raleigh County.