Submitted by Marrie Miller
A pioneer in three states, James B Richardson has dwelt on the frontier all of his life, being in the very van of civilization and always fast on the heels of the flying buffalo. His experience has taught him that no conditions of wildness or barbarism can withstand the spirit of American conquest, and also that our mother earth is generous to her children in this favored land, yielding readily to the persuasive hand of the husbandman, spreading his table with plenty and his pathway with flowers, for he has seen the wilderness redeemed to culture and made fragrant with the bloom of civilization wherever he has halted in his progress through the great West. He was born on January 8, 1851, in Johnson county, Indiana, the son of Edward and Mary (Moorehead) Richardson, natives of Virginia, who came to Indiana soon after their marriage and, after some years of experimental farming in that then new country, removed in 1856 to Iowa, from there a year later to Harrison county, Mo, where they took up government land and were engaged in farming for nearly a quarter of a century. Their ancestors came to the New World among the Cavaliers in the wake of the gallant Raleigh and in the history of the Old Dominion bravely bore an honorable part in peace and war. The Missouri home of the family was one of the finest and best improved in its part of the state and rewarded the skillful labor put upon it with abundant returns. Still, a spirit of discovery and adventure was in the blood, and in 1880 the "old folks" sold out in that state and joined their children in Harlan county, Neb., where they had homesteaded and were farming successfully, but in the case of the father "the plow was nearing the end of the furrow," and within a year after his arrival in his new home he passed away and was buried in its soil, on which the mother now makes her home with her daughter. James B Richardson grew to manhood and was educated in Harrison county, Mo, remaining at home until he was twenty-one years old. In 1872 he removed to Harlan county, Neb, and began farming among the first settlers there. The county is now well developed and rather thickly populated, but when he "stuck his stake" there it was a wild, uncultivated region, in which the buffalo roamed at will and Indians contested the right of the white man to dwell. Mr Richardson became a skillful hunter as well as a farmer, chased the buffalo all over the county and had many interesting and thrilling experiences with both wild beasts and savage men. More than ten years were passed in this section and in the spring of 1883 he and his brother George came to northern Wyoming and located on the ranch which he now occupies in Crook county, nine miles north of Sundance, which section was also at that time a new country with but few settlers. With characteristic energy he at once began to improve his place and build up an industry in cattle raising to which he has given his strength to good purpose, his ranch being in excellent condition and well provided with all the necessary appliances for its purposes, and he is contemplating other improvements, which will make it one of the most desirable homes in his portion of the county. On November 3, 1878, he married with Miss Belle Watson of Harlan county, Neb, where the marriage was consummated. She is a native of New York of Scotch ancestry, her parents, James and Agnes (Morrison) Watson, coming to America from their native Scotland soon after their marriage, leaving the records and traditions of old and useful families behind them to build their domestic altar in a new world of hope and promise. After a short stay in "New York City, they came west to Harlan county, Neb, and, settling on a homestead, began farming and continued in this occupation until the death of the father in 1899. and his widow still lives at the old home. Five children have blessed the hearthstone of Mr Richardson: John W, who died on August 19,1898, aged seventeen years; Cleo P, Ina B, Vera F and York B. He is a Republican in politics, but not an active partisan.
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