Home > Biographies > Cornelius Ridley
Old Chester, PA: Biographical Sketches
Photograph courtesy of
(A biographical sketch by Samuel M. Lemon, M.S., firstname.lastname@example.org, great-great-grandson of Cornelius & Martha Jane Parham Ridley)
Photo taken c. 1895.
The story of the man often called, "Lawyer Ridley," begins with his parents -
Cornelius Ridley and Martha Jane Parham -
former slaves on neighboring plantations in Southampton County, Virginia. Separately, they
escaped during the Civil War, and later reunited here in Media, where they were taken in
by Isaac and Elizabeth Smedly Yarnall - local Quakers who lived on Providence Road. As
they began to find work and establish themselves here, they later moved to the little
house on the corner of Front Street and Providence Road, which is now known as the
"Minshall House." It was there, on June 12, 1867, that William Henry Ridley born.
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© 2002 John A. Bullock III.
This page last updated 10/17/05