JOSIAH RICHARDSON, a highly respected resident of Bloomington, is now retired from active business, and living
in the enjoyment of a competency accumulated by the industry and good management of earlier years. He is a native
of Watertown, Jefferson Co., N. Y., and the son of Josiah and Cynthia (Tolman) Richardson, natives respectively
of Massachusetts and New Hampshire, who spent their entire lives engaged in farming pursuits, and died on the old
homestead when well advanced in years.
The subject of this history remained on the farm until nineteen years old, attending school during the winter seasons. In 1851 he started for the West, and located in Bloomington, then a little city of 1,000 souls. In 1854 he purchased a piece of ground, put up a good building, and engaged in the manufacture of wagons and carriages. The building with its contents was destroyed by fire the following year, and Mr. Richardson lost the greater part of his worldly possessions. He then engaged in the drug business with Orin Waters for one year, then sold out and engaged in his former business on Front street, which he continued until 1876. He then purchased a farm in Belleflower Township, where he raised stock and grain, and at the same time dealt considerably in real estate. He became prominent in the city affairs, and for two years was Alderman in the First Ward.
Mr. Richardson was married, in 1855, to Miss Lovina Dimmett, who was born in Bloomington, and is the daughter of William and Mary (Ervin) Dimmett, both natives of Ohio. They came to Illinois in 1825, first settling in Danville, whence they removed a few months later to Bloomington, and purchased 160 acres of land east of the city. A part of this was laid off in city lots, and upon the balance Mr. D, engaged in farming. The record of their ten children is as follows: Catherine, Mrs. Von Elsner; Lovina, Mrs. Richardson; and Melissa, Mrs. McCracken, reside in Bloomington; Mary, Mrs. Wade, lives in Butler, Mo.; Carrie, Mrs. McIlvain, and Pauline, Mrs. Bettenger, were twins; the former lives in West Point, Kan., and the latter in Bloomington; William H. is also in the latter-named city; Lee and John are in Kansas City, and Susan, Mrs. W. H. Grantly, lives in Appleton, Mo. Mr. Dimmett died Feb. 19, 1879. The mother still lives on the old homestead, where she has resided for the last fifty years.
Our subject and wife have an adopted daughter, Maude B. The family residence is a handsome and substantial structure, which was erected at a cost of $7,000, and combines all the comforts and conveniences of a modern dwelling. Mr. R. is a Republican in politics, and with his wife attends the Unitarian Church.
Portrait and biographical album of McLean County, Ill. : containing full page portraits and biographical sketches of prominent and representative citizens of the county, together with portraits and biographies of all the governors of Illinois, and of the presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), 413. Transcribed and annotated by Judy Rosella Edwards.