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Richardson, J. M.


Posted By: Janelle Martin (email)
Date: 6/2/2013 at 11:51:37

History of Hamilton County, Iowa, vol. II, 1912, J.W. Lee, pp. 245-246.

J. M. Richardson has given all his energies and activities since he left his father's farm in his boyhood to the jewelry business and has attained a degree of success in that line inseparable from his specialized knowledge. He is now operating one of the largest jewelry stores in Webster City, maintaining his business at No. 601 Second street, where he has been located since 1890. He was born in Mexico, Oswego county, New York, October 24, 1865. His parents were Marcus D. and Mariette (Calkins) Richardson, the former a prominent farmer in New York state during his entire life. The father died in that section of the country when he was about sixty-eight years of age and his wife passed away in 1887, when she was sixty years old.

J. M. Richardson began his studies at the usual age and pursued the regular curriculum in the common schools of his native city. As a boy he became acquainted with the details of modern and progressive agriculture by assisting his father in the work of the farm, but his ambition soon led him away from the tilling of the soil and directed his energies to commercial enterprises. When seventeen years of age he left home and went to Pulaski, New York, with the definite intention of learning the jewelry trade. His apprenticeship continued for three years and at the end of that time he was an expert workman in the mechanical details of his chosen business and an intelligent and discriminating judge of precious stones. In the fall of 1886 he came to Webster City and entered the employ of B. Detlor, a prominent jeweler in this city, with whom he remained for four years, gaining valuable personal experience in business methods and in the details of his occupation. In July, 1891, Mr. Richardson formed a partnership with H. J. Arthur under the name of Arthur & Richardson and carried on a prosperous jewelry business to which was attached also a drug department. The co-partnership continued for eight years and the business grew rapidly under the able management of Mr. Richardson. In 1899 he started an independent jewelry concern under his own name and has continued in this line of activity at No. 601 Second street since that time. He has become well known in business circles of Webster City as an intelligent and broad-minded man interested not only in his own enterprises but in every movement which makes for the industrial and social development of the community in which he resides. His cooperation is eagerly sought in many financial enterprises. He is a director of the First National Bank of Webster City and vice president of the Northwestern Felt Shoe Company. His activities are gradually extending as his prominence in the business world increases and his feet are upon the pathway which leads to distinguished business success.

On July 13, 1893, Mr. Richardson was united in marriage to Miss Hattie Estes, a daughter of L. L. Estes, one of the pioneer residents of Hamilton county and a prominent business man of Webster City. They have two children: Lewis E., whose birth occurred in 1894; and Claire, born in 1897. The family residence is at No. 1218 Des Moines street, Webster City. In his political views Mr. Richardson is consistently republican, but, although he keeps himself well informed upon public questions of national and local character, he gives very little attention to politics. He holds membership in Acacia Lodge, No. 176, F. & A. M.; in Hope Chapter, No. 88, R. A. M. ; and in Triune Commandery, No. 41, K. T., holding in the latter branch of Masonry the office of past eminent commander. He belongs to Webster City Lodge, No. 302, B. P. O. E., and his name is well known in that organization. He is a member of the Congregational church and is recognized as a man of exemplary character, both in private and public life. His increasing business is gratifying evidence of his advancing prosperity. His fellow citizens recognize him as a successful man who is actively interested in the development of his personal enterprise as a valuable municipal asset.


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