Magistrate, Deceased Person
1615 – 1689
Who was Richard Waldron?
Major Richard Waldron dominated the society and economy of early colonial Dover, New Hampshire and had a substantial presence in greater New Hampshire and in neighbouring Massachusetts. He was the second president of the colonial New Hampshire Royal Council after it was first separated from Massachusetts.
An "immensely able, forceful and ambitious" member of a well-off Puritan family, he left his English home and moved to what is now Dover, New Hampshire. He first came about 1635. He built mills on the Cocheco River, amassed local land holdings that endured in his family for over 170 years, controlled much of the local native trade, and was prominent in local politics and as deputy to the Massachusetts General Court for twenty five years from 1654. He was speaker several times. When the first president of the colonial New Hampshire council, John Cutt, died suddenly, council member Walderne became the acting president or governor until Edward Cranfield arrived from England. "By the 1670s the portion of Dover known as Cocheco had become something like Waldron's personal fiefdom, and citizens in the other areas of settlement rarely challenged his social authority."
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