Richard Arkwright, Jr.

Is your surname Arkwright?

Research the Arkwright family

Richard Arkwright, Jr.'s Geni Profile

Share your family tree and photos with the people you know and love

  • Build your family tree online
  • Share photos and videos
  • Smart Matching™ technology
  • Free!

About Richard Arkwright, Jr.

Richard Arkwright junior, the son of Sir Richard Arkwright of Cromford, Derbyshire, was the financier (creditor) of Samuel Oldknow of Marple and Mellor and a personal friend. His son Captain Arkwright married Francis Kemble, daughter of the theatre manager Stephen Kemble.

Richard Arkwright junior was born in Bolton. His mother, Patience Holt, died when he was only a few months old, and his father, Sir Richard Arkwright, raised him on his own until he was six, then married Margaret Biggensin, with whom he had a daughter, Susan. The couple divorced a few years later, but Richard Arkwright senior tried to follow the education of his children.

Sir Richard had earlier patented the water frame, a roller-spinning machine powered by water, that turned textile spinning into a factory industry and in so doing founded the factory system of manufacture.

Richard Arkwright junior followed in his father's footsteps, and he developed the factory system even further. He was an outstanding organiser of labour and machinery processing, ambitious, forceful and persevering.

The wealth of Arkwright, much greater than that of his father, was not only due to the textile industry. After his father died, much of the legacy was bequeathed to his daughter born of his second marriage, her grandchildren and various charities, while the rest, including a number of factories, was bequeathed to son Richard. He decided to invest in real estate and banks, and began to sell some factories to invest in government securities and real estate. This saved him from bankruptcy when a major economic depression descended upon Great Britain, after the defeat of Napoleon.[2]

In 1804 he became a partner in the bank of John Toplis, and when the latter died in 1829, he took full possession of the company and financed local lords, contractors and governmental plans: like his father, he financed important works in the public transportation sector and railways, including the Cromford Canal. At his death his fortune amounted to over three million pounds, which made him the richest British man from the bourgeoisie.

Arkwright was the High Sheriff of Derbyshire in 1801.

His son Richard (1781–1832) was a member of parliament (MP) for Rye from 1813 to 1818, and again from 1826 to 1830.

view all 20

Richard Arkwright, Jr.'s Timeline

1755
December 19, 1755
Bolton, Greater Manchester, UK
1780
May 29, 1780
Age 24
Bolton, UK
May 29, 1780
Age 24
Cromford, UK
1781
September 30, 1781
Age 25
Cromford, Derbyshire, UK
1783
March 7, 1783
Age 27
1784
April 17, 1784
Age 28
Bakewell, Derbyshire, UK
1785
August 27, 1785
Age 29
Derbyshire, England
1786
November 22, 1786
Age 30
Cromford, Derbyshire, UK
1786
Age 30
1788
January 7, 1788
Age 32