Agent Charles F. Richardson

Charles F. Richardson was an agent for the Lowell Humane Society from 1897 until his death in 1927. Especially in the first half of his tenure, Agent Richardson's cases involved the mistreatment of horses and children. Horse-drawn wagons were used by businesses to move freight, and stagecoaches and horse-drawn railroad cars helped transport people. Agent Richardson warned teamsters about overloading their horses. He had the power to remove lame horses from work. He also issued warnings to drivers who did not provide blankets for their horses in cold weather and to drivers who used curb bits, which were considered inhumane.

He began what the local papers called a "crusade" against men who would bring lame horses into Lowell to sell at auction. Agent Richardson's activities were regularly reported in the paper, especially cases that involved cruelty to children. His dedication to children led him to take on the additional role of probation officer later in life.

His obituary in the November 11, 1927 Lowell Sun stated, "As agent of the Humane Society shortly following his appointment, Mr. Richardson waged a successful campaign to enforce humane treatment of horses and other animals in the face of considerable opposition. He also handled many cases in the courts of the district, acting as prosecutor for the society, in which capacity he was unusually successful. Through his work as a probation officer for children he became widely known and his advice in connection with his work both as humane society officer and probation officer was widely sought. He gave freely of his time to both branches of this work and gained the respect and admiration of all with whom he came in contact while carrying on the many duties of his offices."

The newspaper articles and cartoon below are representative of the many cases he handled.