13 Facts About Richard Bland


In 1766, Richard Bland wrote an influential pamphlet, An Inquiry into the Rights of the British Colonies, questioning the right of the British Parliament to impose taxes on colonists without their consent.


Richard Bland married Anna Bennett, the daughter of Virginia Governor Richard Bennett, who bore three sons: Theodorick Jr.


Richard Bland became close friends with his first cousin, Peyton Randolph, that would last throughout their lives, often sitting side by side during their years of service in the House of Burgesses, the Committee of Safety, and the First and Second Continental Congresses.


Richard Bland studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1746, but never offered his legal services to the public.


Richard Bland served as a justice of the peace in Prince George County and was made a militia officer in 1739.


Richard Bland frequently served on committees whose role was to negotiate or frame laws and treaties.


Sometimes described as a bookish scholar as well as farmer, Richard Bland read law and was admitted to the Virginia bar in 1746.

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Peyton Randolph

Richard Bland did not practice before the courts but collected legal documents and became known for his expertise in Virginia and British history and law.


Richard Bland often published pamphlets, as well as letters.


Richard Bland's first widely distributed public paper came as a result of the Parson's Cause, which was a debate from 1759 to 1760 over the established church and the kind and rate of taxes used to pay the Anglican clergy.


Richard Bland believed that reconciliation with England was still possible and desirable.


Richard Bland served on the committee which drafted Virginia's first constitution in 1776.


Richard Bland owned an extensive library for his time, much of which was acquired after his death by Jefferson and his nephew-in-law St George Tucker, and made its way to the Library of Congress as part of Jefferson's personal library donation in 1815.