Edward Richards1,2,3

M, b. circa 1610, d. 25 August 1684
     Edward was born circa 1610 in England. Edward married Susanna Hunting, daughter of William Hunting and Margaret Randolfe, on 10 September 1638 in Dedham, Norfolk County, Massachusetts. The 10th day of the 7th month 1638.4,5,6 The family were Puritans. About three weeks before his death, Ester Fisher, a neice of his & the daughter of Elder John Hutting, visited him. He related to her that he was in the process of writing his will.

In his will, Edward gave much more to his younger son, Nathaiel, than to his elder son, John. Nathaniel received besides other parts of the estate, all of the homestead. Edward ended this directive with the statement “John had enough and Nathaniel none too much”
In bequeathing to his two daughters: “I give to my son Bullard five pound to be paid in Country pay in addition to what he hath had already. And to my daughter Mary Bullard in case he leave her a widow more fifteen pounds to be paid three pound per yeare. I give to my son hearsey Forty pound to be paid in Country pay to be added to that which I gave him before.” As for his wife, Susanna, she was to have during her life, the use of “the end of my dwelling house wherein I now live & the cellar”, she was also to be paid by the executors, 12 pound per year and she was to have “Forty pounds in household stuffs as she shall chuse to be at her own dispose.”.7,8

Edward departed this life the 25th day of the 6th month 1684 in Dedham, Norfolk County, Massachusetts.9 His will was probated on 25 September 1684. As the two brothers seemed not to have a problem with the division and from the statement of Edward, it is likely that John had already received a considerable portion estate from his father. Edward's son-in-laws, however, filed a suit against his will at a date that is not known. The case was heard 12 November 1685 and was decided based on evidence of 12 separate depositions and receipts signed by the plaintiffs. Three of the depositions which were the most relevant to the outcome and the receipts show the following: 1. Nathaniel Bullard received household goods valued at 19s 6p from the executors, that is the two sons, John and Nathaniel Richards. He also had acknowledged receipt of two steers and other estate on account of his wife's legacy from the estate, and that he would discharge the executors from the legacy. 2. John Hersey also publicly acknowledged receiving 8 pound in money and would also discharge the executors in the same manner as Nathaniel Bullard. 3. A receipt was signed by Nathaniel and Mary Bullard for 8 pound in household goods as their share in the estate of Mary's parents, Edward and Susanna Richards. The receipt being a full discharge for their share of the estate. 4. A receipt was signed by John Hersee of Hingham on the account of his wife Sarah as a full discharge for their share of the estate 5. A second receipt signed by John Hersee of Hingham for a cow and two heifers valued at 8 pound 15 shillings in part of the portion due to Sarah.
The plaintiffs were attempting to have the will voided. However, having acknowledged receipt of portions of the estate as per the will and having signed a receipt of full discharge of the executors, they had already accepted the will as valid and had no recourse to have the will voided.10


Susanna Hunting b. 9 Dec 1611, d. 9 Sep 1684


  1. [S12] Rev. Abner Morris, Genealogical Register of the Descendants of Several Ancient Puritans, Volume III: pages 105-106.
  2. [S115] Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, Showing Three Generations Of Those Who Came Before May, 1692, On The Basis Of Farmer's Registar, Volume 3: page 532 - Edward Richards, Dedham, m. 10 Sept. 1638, Susanna Hunting, perhaps sis. of the first John, had Mary, b. 29 Sept. 1639; John, 1 or 10 July 1641; Dorcas, 24 Sept. 1643; Nathaniel, 25 Jan. 1649, not bapt. as Geneal. Reg. XIV. 111, says, next day, wh. was Friday; and Sarah, 1651; was freem. 2 June 1641. From his will, 1684, shortly bef. his d. we learn, that John and Nathaniel were then liv. that Mary m. Nathaniel Bullard, and ano. d. m. a Hearsey; that a gr.d. was Mary Gay, prob. w. of Jonathan, and d. of Bullard; and that if Nathaniel would bring up one of his s. at the coll. he should have £60. EDWARD, complained of 1646, by Gerard Spencer, may have been of Lynn, a joiner in 1661, was in 40th yr. had William, b. 7 June 1663; in 1678 swore that he had liv. there 45 yrs. and d. 26 Jan. 1690, in 74th yr. it is said, leav. s. John.
  3. [S1506]
  4. [S1138] The Record of Baptisms, Marriages and Deaths and admission to the church and dismissals therefrom, transcribed from the church records in the town of Dedham, Massachusetts, 1638-1845, page viii: Edward Richards was born in England about 1610-1615, and married here September 10, 1638, Susan Hunting, the sister of Elder John Hunting.
  5. [S12] Rev. Abner Morris, Genealogical Register of the Descendants of Several Ancient Puritans, page 106.
  6. [S1504] New England Historical and Genealogical Register, Massachusetts Vital Records to 1850
    , page 126 - Edward Richards & Suzan Hunting, were married ye 10 of the 7 mo.
  7. [S1167] Robert I. Farrington Esq., Edward Richards of Dedham, Massachusetts, pages 87-89 - Will Information of Edward Richards dated: __ 1684.
  8. [S12] Rev. Abner Morris, Genealogical Register of the Descendants of Several Ancient Puritans, Volume III: page 105-106 - In May 1684, being advanced in age, he walked to his neighbor's, and before witnesses dictated his will, left it ito be copied and died before he had an opportunity to sign it. In his will he gave his wife room in his house, the selection of “household stuffe” to the value of £40 and an annuity of £12, to be paid her by his sons National and John. His homestead, the place now owned and occupied by Rev. Dr. Burgess, two miles west of the Court House, he gave to his son Nathaniel with lots in Fowl Meadow, and on Pond, Poweset, Birch, and Great Plains. “The remainder of Mr. Cook’s Farm” he gave to Nathaniel and John. To his son [in law] Bullard he gave £5 in addition to what he had already given him, and his daughter Mary Bullard £15 , if left a widow, to be paid her in three annual installments. To his son [in law] Hearsey he bequeathed £40 in addition to what he had previously granted him. To his grand daughter Mary (Bullard) Gay he willed £30 , in addition to what she had already received. To his son Nathaniel, “if he brought up a son to learning,” he bequeathed “£60 more out of his estate towards it.
  9. [S1167] Robert I. Farrington Esq., Edward Richards of Dedham, Massachusetts, page 91-92 - Ester Fisher, aged 54, said – She visited her uncle Edward Richards about three weeks before his death and in course of conversation her uncle told her he had done something about a will but had not finished it. She again visited her uncle three days before his death “and he was in a grievious distracted frame.”
    Probably Mrs. Fisher did not testify in court. Her deposition is not dated and she said in it: because “of the badness of the weather and my own weakness and inability of body I am not able to come down to ye court. But I do before John Hearsy and William Dean and Mehitable Dean declare that whenever I am called to give my oath in this case I will freely do it as witness my hand.”
    Ester (Hester) Fisher was the daughter of Elder John and Ester (Seaborn) Hunting, born in England about 1631 and married at Dedham, 26 of the 10th m 1649, Nataniel Fisher of Dorchester, . . . Nathaniel Fisher in his will made in 1660 appointee his father-in-law, Elder John Hunting, one of his executors, Ester Fisher called Edward Richards her uncle because he had married her aunt [Susannah Hunting] who was a sister of her father. [note – this is proof that Susannah was a sister of Elder John Hunting – KLM]
  10. [S1167] Robert I. Farrington Esq., Edward Richards of Dedham, Massachusetts, pages 87-90.