Richard Henry Richards was born on July 2, 1849 at Fall River, Massachusetts, United States the eldest child of english parents James Richards, an iron puddler and Eliza Ann Mansell. A sister Mary Elizabeth was born in 1851 and in the early 1850′s the Richards moved to Boonton, New Jersey where his mothers family lived. Four more siblings were born in Boonton, Eliza Ann (1854), John Winfield (1856), Francis Mansell (1861) and James William (1864).
At a very tender age he began to work in a nail mill and subsequently he was employed in the Boonton Rolling Mill. In his eighteenth year he started to clerk in a general store and was occupied in this manner for a short time. He then took a short course in a business college at Paterson, New Jersey and in 1870 moved to Paterson for next four years.
On September 1, 1873 he married Jean Fairburn McArthur at Paterson. She was the daughter of Colin McArthur and Jennie Urqart of Glasgow, Scotland. The couple returned to Boonton and, on May 4, 1874, opened a general merchandise store. A son, John Franklin Richards was born in 1875.
As time passed he increased his business and in 1887 opened a second store in Boonton, the latter dealing exclusively in dry goods, boots and shoes. Richard Richards manages the general store and his wife, who is a decidedly capable business woman, has charge of the dry goods store. Both establishments carry a high-class of goods and cater to a very select patronage.
On May 8, 1879 a second son, William Forest Richards is born. Tragically eldest son John Franklin Richards died on October 25, 1881.
In his political convictions Mr. Richards was a loyal adherent of the principles put forward by the Republican party. He was inspector of elections, served on the common council of Boonton, for several years and was also the popular and efficient incumbent of the office of surveyor of highways. In the time-honored Masonic order he was a member of Arcana Lodge, No. 60, F. and A. M.; and he was likewise affiliated with the Boonton lodges of the I.O.O.F. and the J.O.U.A.M. He and his wife were members of the Presbyterian church.
On November 12, 1902 William Forest Richards married Maude Elizabeth Lytle at Jersey City, New Jersey and provided Richard Richards with three grandchildren, Colin Livingston Richards (1903), Dorothy Silverthorn Richards (1907) and Lewis Ramsey Richards (1912).
Jean Fairburn Richards died on December 1, 1920 at the couples home at 233 Church Street, Boonton. Richard Henry Richards died on October 20, 1928 at Morristown Memorial Hospital, Morristown, Morris County, New Jersey. Both are buried at Boonton.