William Richardson

1738 — 21/08/1799
A brief biography


Christopher Richardson — 1734 —
William Richardson 1738 — 1799
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Mentioned in


William Richardson Solebay Log Book 1764 ...
William Richardson of Gainford 1738-1799
Michael Hogan and his ''Indian Princess' ...

Diary of a Leycester
The Richardsons of Leatherhead

William Richardson

Son of Christopher Richardson and Jane Potter. .

Born in Limehouse, London, England in 1738, the eleventh year of the reign of King George II, and died aged sixty-one in Gainford, Yorkshire in the thirty-ninth year of the reign of King George III  He has 240 direct descendants in the family.

The Solebay

On 29th May 1764, the 350 ton, Honorable East India Company trading ship “Solebay” passed the Downs and left the English Channel, bound for Bombay. She was under the command of 27 year old Captain William Richardson, who evidently had already spent many years at sea, and may even have sailed to India before.

The Solebay had been purchased from the Royal Navy the year before by Charles Dingley. William's younger brother Christopher became clerk to Charles Dingley, and became a partner in the timber merchants upon Charles' death in 1769.

The East India Company instructed William Richardson to proceed to Madagascar together with the Beckenham ''to purchase slaves for the use of our settlements upon the West coast of Sumatra ... they are hired also for the run to India only and then to be disposed of on account of their owners
William Richardson based himself in Calcutta, where he married Anna Marie Lacy, from Tirhut state in present-day Bihar.

Much of what we know about William comes from his extensive Will (available in the Library).



Captain William Richardson was born in 1738, the son of Jane and Christopher Richardson. He had two sons and six daughters with Anna Maria LACY. His Euro/Indian bride .Who he lived with for most of his life, although never offically married .He returned to England , without Anna Maria .
He died in August 1799 in Gainford, Durham, at the age of 61.
Capt. William Richardson, a merchant trader, and mentor to James Hogan and later his father-in-law. When he was in his early 20s, Hogan married Frances, who was born to Richardson and his ethnically Indian housekeeper, referred to as Anna Marie Lacy, from Tirhut state in present-day Bihar. Richardson acquired a charter enabling him to function as a privateer; the “letter of marque” displayed on Hogan’s ship was both a warning and a statement of fact. This meant that while Richardson (and Hogan) weren’t employees of the East India Company, they could trade, and as privateers, attack and plunder ships belonging to other nations./ppThrough Richardson, Hogan was introduced to well-known traders who had worldwide links—they sold rice and slaves to the Americas and conducted silk, tea, and opium trade in China and the East


Ref: D/Ed 10/1/51
1/2 March 1804
(1) William Richardson of Mile End, Middlesex, Esq.
(2) Louis Walton of Gainford, gent and Charlotte Walton his wife
(3) Christopher Richardson of Sinchouse, Middlesex, timber merchant
Lease and release by (1) to (3) in trust for (2) of 1 messuage with garden nearly opposite and adjoining messuage lying south of Gainford back lane and north of Gainford Town street
Recites marriage settlement of (2), dated 8 November 1800, and will of William Richardson deceased, 22 October 1798, whereby property was devised to (2)
Consideration: lease 5s. from (3) to (1); release 10s. from (3) to (1)
View D/Ed 10/1/51 physical details

Ref: D/Ed 10/1/52
19/20 November 1840
(1) Christopher Richardson of New Charlton, London, timber merchant
(2) John Leycester Adolphus of London, Esq, Frederick George Richardson, of Sinchouse, Middlesex, timber merchant, Trustees of Charlotte Walton
(3) Louis Walton of Gainford, Esq.
Lease and release by (1) and (2) to (3) pursuant to a marriage settlement, dated 8 November 1800
Recites previous deeds, 8 November 1800 to 20 May 1840
Consideration: nominal
View D/Ed 10/1/52 physical details


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