Riddick’s Folly celebrates new museum additions

Published 5:48 pm Tuesday, April 25, 2023

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Riddick’s Folly Director and Curator Edward L. King is celebrating three new additions of furniture to the museum’s collection of history. 

Nathaniel Riddick Withers, a descendant of the Riddick family, presented the museum with new artifacts from his family’s line to include for preservation. 

King talked about the family origins with Mills Riddick, an owner of four plantations — Old Place, Sweet Retreat, Soldier’s Hope and Jericho — as well as his wife Mary Taylor Riddick.

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“He and his wife [Mary Taylor Riddick] married and they moved to Main Street around 1820. They were living in a small home on this site and in 1837, it burned. So he lost three buildings here on Main Street to the fire, collected just over $5,000 insurance money and built this one for $5,000 and they had fourteen children. Unfortunately, she lost four. Only 10 lived to maturity,” King said. “Nathaniel Riddick who just gave us the furniture, he is the great-great-great-grandson of Mills and Mary Taylor Riddick. He descends from Washington Layafette Riddick, [who] was a son of Mills and Mary Taylor Riddick.” 

King also explained how important it is to be able to preserve the pieces of Riddick’s family history.

“It’s really amazing to us to be able to get Riddick pieces back, because when the union troops were here during the civil war, they took about 85% to 90% of what was in the house,” King said of receiving the artifacts from Withers in Richmond. “So anytime we can get a Riddick piece of furniture or any artifact back, it’s really great.”


Editor’s note: Updated first quote at 12:31p.m., Wednesday, April 26 to reflect accurate quote.