John W. Richards
Town of Schaghticoke

This biography is from Troy and Rensselaer County, New York, Volume III, by Rutherford Hayner, Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc., New York and Chicago, 1925. It was submitted by Debby Masterson.

JOHN W. RICHARDS. As founder, editor, and manager of the Schaghticoke "Sun," one of the leading weeklies of Rensselaer county, John W. Richards has achieved a success which could be won only by a man of more than ordinary ability. In twenty-nine years he has made his publication one of the best-known in the county and has established an enviable reputation as the owner of a live news sheet which meets the needs and demands of the particular section to which it caters.

Mr. Richards is of Welsh and Irish descent and on the paternal side represents the third generation of druggists, his own career as a pharmacist having covered a period of fifteen years. His paternal grandparents were Richard, who was a successful pharmacist in New York City, and a native of Wales, and Sarah (Evans) Richards. John D. Richards, father of John W., was born in New York City, and died at Schaghticoke, January 4, 1876, at the early age of thirty-four years. He also was the owner of a prosperous pharmaceutical business and after his death his wife continued the business to the time of her death, which occurred April 28, 1885, when she was forty-three years of age.

John W. Richards was born in Schaghticoke, New York, May 13, 1865, and received a good practical education in the public schools of his native district. Even before his school training was completed he became his mother's assistant in the drug store and when school days were over gave his full time to that business. After the death of his mother in 1885, he became the sole owner and manager of the business and continued to successfully conduct that enterprise until 1900, when he sold it to A. N. VanBuren. Meantime, on July 20, 1894, Mr. Richards had established another enterprise. He founded the weekly publication known as the Schaghticoke "Sun." in connection with F. M. Askins, and since 1898 he has continued to be sole owner, manager and editor to the present time (1923). The qualities of Mr. Richard's ability is evidenced by the fact that in the years which have passed since that time he has made this paper one of the leading publications of its kind in the county. His subscription list has steadily increased and he is known as the editor of one of the largest news publications of the State.

Politically he gives his support to the principles and the candidates of the Republican party and has always taken an active part in its affairs. From 1891 to 1895 he served as town clerk ; for two terms he served as president of the village ; and for the past eighteen years he has served as village clerk. He has also rendered efficient service for the past fifteen years as clerk of the Board of Education. In all of these local public offices he has proven his devotion to the public welfare by independent and disinterested decisions and by faithful discharge of the duties of his office. Fraternally he is identified with Schaghticoke Lodge, No. 526, Independent Order of Odd Fellows. His religious affiliation is with the Methodist church of Schaghticoke, which he serves as a member of the official board.

John W. Richards married Mary H. Hewitt, on December 26, 1888, at Schaghticoke, New York, daughter of Henry and Emma C. (Osborne) Hewitt. Mr. and Mrs. Richards have no children. They reside in Schaghticoke.

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