At another genealogy site I have discovered that there is James Cochran Richardson (b 1824, Tennessee, d 1897, burial place McAteer Cemetery), married to Frances Ann Collins (b. 1833, d. 1909). They had 8 children:
John W (b 1857), Henry (b.1859), James Edward (b1861), Sydney(a girl, b. 1864), Alfred H (b. 1866), William F (b. 1868), Edney/Edna (a girl, b.1871), and Robert L (b1873).
In the 1860 Census, Marshall County, TN, James and Frances have only two sons -- John and Henry.
In the 1870 Census, Marshall County, James and Frances and their family are named using initials. So we have JC, FA, JW, Edward, SM, and AH. Yes, Edward is the only child who has a name and not initials, and this is where the puzzle starts. (Also, Henry seems to have passed, and his burial place is unknown.)
The 1880 Census, Marshall County, TN, James and Frances have John W, James Edward, Sydney M, Alfred Holland, William Franklin, Edney/Edna, and Robert Lee. Sydney M. is not seen again, and I don't know what happened to her as I cannot find her on any census or marriage record.
The puzzle: I have seen many trees listing Edward Washington Richardson, aka Edward W Richardson, EW Richardson. EW Richardson married Miss Ella Hamblin in TN, August 1908, when EW Richardson was 46. I have looked at marriage certificate and the signature does not look the same as another document I have found, signed by James E Richardson. Also, by the 1910 Census, taken in Eden, Alameda County, CA, James E Richardson and his wife, Anna Eliza Hammond have been married 15 years, and the census states that Anna has had 2 sons. James E and Anna married in Lamar County, TX, 10 Dec 1894 (per family Bible, the official record at RootsWeb shows 19 Dec 1894).
Anna and James E had two sons -- Clyde Irwin (b. 1895) and Henry Lee(b. 1899). Clyde was my g-grandfather, Henry my great uncle. Voter registration for James E shows an address that I am familiar with because I visited there as a child. I have traced James E through census sheets, and personal knowledge and information from the family Bible. I am also certain that James E is my g-g-grandfather because his mother was Frances Collins, and in the family Bible is also a family tree of the Collins family, noting marriages and births of cousins/in-laws. I also have found on Find-a-Grave the headstone of Anna Eliza Hammond Richardson, and there chiseled in the stone is her name, her husband's name, and her two sons - Clyde and Henry.
What to do about other trees here at Wiki that have incorrect information? Over at the other site I have written notes to the people having this mix-up of James E and Edward W, but the few replies I have received don't seem to take me seriously, probably because I cannot provide documentation as I only have my handwritten notes. My sister has the family Bible and we don't want to damage the Bible by taking a copy, and my sister does not have a smart phone to take a photo. The profile managers here at Wiki have not been active for several years, so I don't see any point in writing to them. Is that being defeatist and should I write them a note anyway?
How can I be sure that the "Edward" noted in the 1870 Census is James E Richardson and not Edward Washington Richardson? My grandmother did tell me that the Richardson family was from TN, so I am certain that James Cochran and Frances Ann Collins are the correct great grandparents for my line. There is also a family tree in the family Bible delineating Anna Eliza Hammond's tree.
Thanks in advance for any help and/or insight given.