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Richard Joshua Reynolds

Birthplace: Rock Spring Plantation, Patrick County, Virginia, United States
Death: Died in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, United States
Cause of death: Pancreatic Cancer
Immediate Family:

Son of Hardin William Reynolds and Nancy Jane Reynolds
Husband of Mary Katherine Reynolds
Father of Dick Reynolds and Zachary Smith Reynolds
Brother of Abram David Reynolds; Mary Joyce Reynolds; Wiliam Neal Reynolds; Hardin Harbour Reynolds and Lucy Burroughs Critz

Managed by: Erica "the Disconnectrix" Howton
Last Updated:

About R.J. Reynolds

Richard Joshua "R. J." Reynolds (July 20, 1850 - July 29, 1918) was an American businessman and founder of the R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company.

Parents: Hardin William Reynolds and Nancy Jane Wilcox.

  1. Married: Mary Katherine Smith (November 17, 1880 - May 23, 1923), who was 30 years his junior, on February 27, 1905 in Mount Airy, North Carolina. She was the daughter of Zachary Taylor Smith (February 19, 1847 - June 13, 1938) and Mary Susan Jackson (January 21, 1855 - April 17, 1926). Reynolds and Katherine's father Zachary were cousins, and Reynolds had known Katherine since she was a young girl.[3]


  1. Richard Joshua Reynolds, Jr. (April 4, 1906 - December 14, 1964) who married Elizabeth McCaw "Blitz" Dillard (1909 - Dec. 1961), Marrianne O'Brien (? - 1985), Muriel Maud Marston Laurence Greenough (December 28, 1915 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada - 1980), Annemarie Schmitt,
  2. Mary Katherine Reynolds (August 8, 1908 - July 17, 1953) who married Charles Henry Babcock (September 22, 1899 - December 13, 1967).
  3. Nancy Susan Reynolds (February 5, 1910 - January 1985) who married Henry Walker Bagley (August 6, 1900 in Atlanta, Georgia - April 19, 1983) and Gilbert Verney. Nancy and Henry had three daughters, Jane Bagley Lehman,Susan Bagley Bloom, and Anne Bagley Grant, and one son, Smith Bagley, cell phone business executive and social activist.
  4. Zachary Smith Reynolds (November 5, 1911 - July 6, 1932) who married Anne Ludlow Cannon (August 31, 1901 - June 21, 1961) in York, South Carolina November 16, 1929 and Libby Holman in Monroe, Michigan on Sunday November 29, 1931.

Biographic Summary

The son of a tobacco farmer, Richard Joshua Reynolds worked for his father and attended Emory and Henry College from 1868 to 1870, eventually graduating from Bryant and Stratton Business College in Baltimore. He sold his share of the family business in 1874 and moved south to Winston-Salem, North Carolina to start his own tobacco company. Reynolds was a savvy businessman and a hard worker, and he quickly became one of the wealthiest citizens of Winston-Salem; eventually, he was the wealthiest person in the state of North Carolina.[3]



[3] Tursi, Frank (1994). Winston-Salem: A History. John F. Blair, publisher. pp. 110–11, 183

[4] "The Gilded Leaf: Triumph, Tragedy, and Tobacco, Three Generations of the R.J. Reynolds Family and Fortune". Washington Monthly. . Retrieved 1 September 2010.

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R.J. Reynolds's Timeline

July 20, 1850
Patrick County, Virginia, United States
Age 55
Age 60
July 29, 1918
Age 68
Winston-Salem, North Carolina, United States