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Richard Rich (abt. 1637 - bef. 1692)

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Richard Rich
Born about in Dover Point, Province of New Hampshiremap [uncertain]
Son of [father unknown] and [mother unknown]
[sibling(s) unknown]
Husband of — married before [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died before in Eastham, Barnstable County, Province of Mass. Baymap [uncertain]
Rich-594 created 8 Jul 2011 | Last modified | Last edit: 8 May 2017
13:13: Bobbie (Madison) Hall edited the Biography for Richard Rich. [Thank Bobbie for this]
This page has been accessed 1,537 times.

Categories: Eastham, Massachusetts | Dover, New Hampshire.

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Richard Rich's birth place and parents are unknown (see below), but he may have been born about 1637 in Dover Point, New Hampshire.

He first appears in New England records on December 5, 1667, when he witnessed the sale at Piscataqua (Dover Point, NH) of part of the ketch George and Samuel.[1] He was taxed 1671-1675 at Dover. At Eastham, Plymouth Colony, was made a freeman 23 Aug 1681, that being the first record of him in Eastham. He was a mariner, and evidently was married before April 1671 to wife Sarah Roberts. A deed dated 29 April 1671 named Thomas Robert's daughter and son-in-law. The bulk of his father-in-law's property was left to "Richard Rich, husband of my daughter Sarah" (will dated Sept 27, 1673, proved June 30 1674) . [2][3]

In 1681, the town of Eastham voted and admited Richard Rich as an inhabitant.[4] He had the description of his cattle marks entered in the Eastham records April 12, 1686.[5] Also in 1686, he purchased from three residents of Eastham (Steven Atwood Sr., Steven Atwood Jr., and William Mayo) their rights and interest in the thousand acres purchased by Samuel Smith from John Sipson, Indian, for Town use.[4] In 1691, he and Zebulon Thorpe were involved in land transactions at an area called Rich's Island. The documents mention Coggen's Creek and Norman's Creek. The land owned by Richard Rich and his heirs described in various records was mostly in the Billingsgate and Pamet areas of Eastham which would become Wellfleet and Truro.[4]

Richard was a mariner and was lost at sea off Eastham in 1692. In 1907 a monument was erected for Richard Rich and other Rich family members in Truro Old North Cemetery.[4] He died before 5 October of 1692 as an inventory of his estate was taken on that date, totaling about £210, with his son Richard making oath to the truth of its contents.[6] Letters to administer upon his estate were granted to Isaac Pepper and Richard Rich, his eldest son, October 19 of the same year. A settlement was effected April 8, 1697. His wife is not mentioned. The children mentioned in the settlement as surviving are Richard, the eldest son, John, Sarah, Thomas, Samuel and Lydia. At this date, none of the daughters had been married.[7][5]

On November 9, 1708, the son Richard Rich of Eastham, as attorney for his brothers and sisters, John Rich, Thomas Rich, Samuel Rich, Sarah Beaker, and Lydia Hopkins, sold Treworthe’s Point at Kittery, ME., “being land which descended unto us from our honored father, Richard Rich deceased.”[8]


  1. Richard RICH, b. 1674, d. date unknown
  2. John RICH, b. 1676, d. date unknown
  3. Sarah RICH, b. 1676, d. date unknown
  4. Thomas RICH, b. 1679, d. date unknown
  5. Samuel RICH, b. 1685, d. date unknown
  6. Joseph RICH, (uncertain) b. 1691, d. before 1697, not named in father's estate settlement
  7. Lydia RICH, b. 1 Apr 1692, Eastham, Barstable Co., Massachusetts , d. Aft 6 Jun 1749, Harwich, Barnstable Co., Massachusetts

Disputed Parents

Current research provides no proven parents for Richard Rich, including the decades-old Rich Family Association who have researched this line extensively. One pair of suggested, but unproven, parents are Richard Rich and Sarah York. Memorial #51533665 supplies these parents names, as well as other internet "sources," but none provide any primary evidence. Full explanations & research are on the father's profile. Another pair of unsupported parents are Stephen Rich and Anne Saltonstall. Please, do not add parents to Richard without discussion with the profile managers and via the G2G forum.


  1. New Hampshire Province Deeds, Vol. 2:142a
  2. Evelyn Rich, Richard Rich of Eastham on Cape Cod and some of his Descendants, {link via subscription to} NEHGR (Jul 1929) Vol. 83:261. Before "29 (02) 1671" which is the date of a deed of Thomas Roberts of Dover NH, naming his daughter and son-in-law.
  3. John Harvey Treat, The Treat Family: A Genealogy of Trott, Tratt, and Treat (Salem, MA: Salem Press, 1893) p. 189, at footnote #1.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Eastham Public Library, "Richard Rich Land Records.doc"
  5. 5.0 5.1 Josiah Paine, Library of Cape Cod History & Genealogy, (n.p.:, August 26, 1916) "Early settlers of Eastham : containing sketches of all early settlers of Eastham", pp. 19-21.
  6. Barnstable County Probate Records, Vol. 1:67-68
  7. Barnstable County Probate Records, Vol. 2:44-45
  8. Ives Family History Blog {data unsourced}

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DNA Connections
It may be possible to confirm family relationships with Richard by comparing test results with other carriers of his Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA. However, there are no known yDNA or mtDNA test-takers in his direct paternal or maternal line. It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share DNA with Richard:

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On 4 May 2017 at 07:04 GMT Bobbie (Madison) Hall wrote:

Received this from the Rich Family Association: "Many of us have been seeking Richard Rich's ancestry for decades with no definitive proof so far. We're also involved in our Rich DNA project, in which Riches from all over the world are comparing DNA results in an attempt to locate the sources of our various families. By all means, please share any info/proof you might have on Richard Rich and his ancestry." (RFA can be found on Facebook and via their website).

My thoughts: lacking any documented proof, disconnect Richard H.H. Rich from his son, or at the very least, make it clear that he and his spouse are disputed parents. (Edited) Have now disconnected all disputed parents, adding an explanation and links to those parents in the bio.

Richard is 14 degrees from Kevin Bacon, 16 degrees from Cindy Lesure, 19 degrees from Bonnie Thornton and 18 degrees from Queen Elizabeth II Windsor on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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