BIOGRAPHY OF RICHARD LOCKWOOD NAUDAIN
Mr. Naudain is one of a long line of descendants of an old and illustrious Huguenot family of Nantes, Brittany. An exile for the faith, Elias Naudain found a civil and religious home in London, where his son, Elias Naudain, 2, was born. About 1682 Elias Naudain, 2, emigrated to the American plantations, and purchased several tracts of land in what is now New Castle county, Del.
Elias Naudain, great-grandfather of Richard Lockwood Naudain, was born in New Castle county, Del., in 1752. He held extensive tracts of land in Appoquinimink hundred, and owned the slaves employed on his various plantations. His force of character and upright life made him influential in the district, where he was loved as well as honored. Elias Naudain was married to Catherine (Skeer) McComb, widow of Jacob McComb. They had one child, Arnold Skeer. Mrs. Naudain had three children by her first marriage: I. Rev. Lawrence McComb, an eminent preacher of the M. E. church; II. And III. Mary and Catherine, both died in Philadelphia, Pa. Mr. Naudain and his wife were consistent members of the Presbyterian church. He was an elder and a member of the board of trustees of Drawyer’s church. Mr. Elias Naudain and his wife died at the farm near Taylor’s Bridge; both rest in the cemetery at Drawyer’s church.
Arnold Skeer Naudain, grandfather of Richard L. Naudain, was born near Taylor’s Bridge, Appoquinimink hundred, in 1778. His educational advantages were so limited that he may well be called self-educated. His youth was spent on his father’s farm near Taylor’s Bridge. Intelligent and thoughtful, his leisure moments were devoted to reading and study, and the long winter evenings were seasons of pleasure and improvement. In 1800 Mr. Naudain left the home farm, and purchased a tract of 350 acres, much of it timberland, in Appoquinimink hundred. He was an intelligent, scientific farmer, and made many improvements, buildings a comfortable dwelling with a barn and outbuildings. He afterwards erected a handsome dwelling, opposite his old home; here he spent the last years of his life, free from the cares and anxiety of business. Arnold Skeer Naudain was also an ordained minister of the Methodist Episcopal church. He was well-known throughout the state as an eloquent preacher and an upright, conscientious Christian, whose life fully exemplified his teaching. He was a devout student of the Bible, a man of strong character, and exercised a decided influence upon the community. The Rev. Arnold Naudain never accepted remuneration for his ministerial services, and to the end of his life gladly preached to the people. Through his exertions the well-known Salem church was erected, and after spending his energies in that cause, he filled the pulpit for many years. He owned numerous slaves, many of whom he had bought at sheriff’s sales. Long before the anti-slavery party existed, the Rev. Arnold Naudain decided to give freedom to his negroes. Finding that death was near he made his will, appointing two of his sons his executors, and ordered that all his slaves, men and women, over thirty years of age, be given their unconditional freedom; and that all under thirty should be free when they reached that age. Mr. Naudain valued education, and earnestly endeavored to secure its benefits for his children. When Rev. Levi, afterwards Bishop Scott, had completed his college course, Mr. Naudain engaged him as a private tutor in his family and with his usual thoughtful kindness opened his home that the children of his friends and neighbors might enjoy the same advantages. It was under his hospitable roof that Bishop Scott first felt a desire to consecrate his talents to the work of the ministry, and began, according to the advice of his friend, Mr. Naudain, to study theology.
The Rev. Arnold S. Naudain was married, February 1, 1805, to Jemima, daughter of Jacob Van Horne, whose ancestors were emigrants from Holland. Mrs. Naudain was born in Middletown, Del. Their children are: I. Elias Skeer, a farmer of Appoquinimink hundred, born August 5, 1806, married Sarah Ann, daughter of Christopher Brooks, of Newark, Del.; II. Jacob Van Horne, born December 16, 1807, married a lady of New Castle county, Del.; III. Rachel (Mrs. William Wilson), born December 23, 1811; IV. Jemima, died young; V. Sarah Rebecca, born January 3, 1816, died in youth; VI. John, born October 11, 1817; VII. Emily McComb, born March 1, 1819, died June 15, 1890; VIII. Abraham, born April 11, 1821, died in youth; IX. Mary E., born July 24, 1827, married first to Samuel D. Lorwood, of Baltimore, Md., and afterwards to John McCrone; X. Lydia Louise, born August 1, 1831, died in youth. The Rev. Arnold S. Naudain was a careful, devoted husband and father, a kind and considerate master; he was dearly beloved, and his loss was deeply mourned in the district for whose welfare he had so long and faithfully labored. His death, which was the result of cold taken while on a business trip to Wilmington, Del., occurred February 11, 1848. His wife, a devout member of the M. E. church, died March 3, 1848. Born are buried on the homestead, on land which he had set apart for a family burial place.
Mr. Naudain’s maternal ancestors were of English descent. His grandfather, Richard Lockwood, son of John and Ann (Kirkley Lockwood, was born in Kent county, Del., April 14, 1778. He received a good English education, and secured a clerkship in the dry goods store of Joseph White, at Middletown, Del. Mr. Lockwood remained in this store for some years, and afterwards became a partner in the firm of White & Lockwood. He served as a private in the war of 1812, and was stationed at Fort Casimir, New Castle county, Del. He was a famous marksman, and was known to kill a crow flying overhead, using a flint-lock musket loaded with ball. Owing to the dishonesty of a trusted clerk whom he had made a partner, the firm failed, and Mr. Lockwood was reduced to poverty. Nothing daunted, he began anew, with characteristic patience and courage, and not only paid every dollar of debt, but at his death owned 1,200 acres of land in Maryland and Delaware, besides a large amount of personal property. Mr. Lockwood was a zealous member of Union Lodge, No. 5, F. and A. M., of Middletown, and passed all the chairs. Richard Lockwood was married October 28, 1817, to Mary R., daughter of Edward and Lydia R. (Rothwell) Wilson. Their children are: I. Lydia Ann (Mrs. Samuel Price), of Maryland; II. Edward W.; III. Mary R. (Mrs. John M. Naudain); IV. Martha E., married Col. Joshua Clayton; V. William K.; VI. Sarah Frances (Mrs. Cyrus Tatman); VII. Letitia Louisa, married Professor A. M. Goldsborough, of Philadelphia, Pa.; VIII. John J.; IX. Richard T.; X. Margaretta R. (Mrs. Henry Clayton). Mr. Lockwood was a member and for a long time a vestryman of old St. Anne’s P. E. church, and is buried in the cemetery adjoining that church.
John M. Naudain, father of Richard Lockwood Naudain, was born on the farm on which his son, Richard, now resides, in New Castle county, Del., October 11, 1817. He was educated at home under Bishop Scott, and completed his scholastic course at Pennington Seminary, Pennington, N. J. He learned farming, and devoted his life to husbandry. After his father retired from active life, Mr. Naudain took charge of the homestead. He made many improvements on the property, and besides general farming, paid particular attention to the cultivation of choice peaches. He was one of the first and most extensive peach raisers in that part of the state. His orchards contain 8,000 trees of the best varieties, which yield large crops of fine fruit. Mr. Naudain was a Whig, active and influential in the community. In 1860, he was elected to a seat in the State Legislature, where he discharged his duties with characteristic promptness and fidelity. He was widely-known and esteemed for his good judgment and integrity. John M. Naudain was married to Mary R., daughter of Richard and Mary R. (Wilson) Lockwood, of Appoquinimink hundred. Their children are: I. Richard Lockwood; II. Mary J., married Captain William C. Eliason, of Baltimore, Md., president of the Tolchester Steamboat Company; III. John M., secretary and treasurer of same company, Baltimore; IV. Louise, married Robert M. Frances, of the same company. Mr. Naudain and his wife attended old St. Anne’s P. E. church, in Appoquinimink hundred. He died at the homestead in 1864, and his wife in 1860; both are buried in the cemetery at St. Anne’s church.
Richard Lockwood Naudain attended the public schools of Appoquinimink hundred, and Middletown Academy, graduating from Newark Academy, at Newark, Del. After his graduation he secured a clerkship with Mr. Williamson, general merchant at Newark, Del., but resigned at the end of a year to accept a similar position with the firm of Reynolds Brothers, Middletown, Del. Mr. Naudain afterwards spent one year with Charles Tatman, general merchant, and late partner of his grandfather, Richard Lockwood. In 1874 Richard L. Naudain abandoned mercantile pursuits, and returning to the homestead devoted his energies to the cultivation of the soil. In 1878 he purchased the homestead, where he has spent the last twenty-four years. Mr. Naudain has greatly improved his property, planting orchards, and adding a large dairy. He pays particular attention to raising cattle and horses, and has none but the best breeds. Active and athletic, Mr. Naudain is not only a skillful and fearless equestrian, but has always delighted in all manly sports; in his younger days he was a base-ball player of some renown, and he is still an expert swimmer and oarsman. Mr. Naudain is a practical business man and an intelligent citizen, respected and esteemed in the community for his sound judgment and integrity. He is a Democrat, actively interested in local affairs, and a member of the Democratic county committee. In 1883-84 he was tax-collector of Appoquinimink hundred, and in 1888 was the party nominee for the State Legislature, but was defeated, the whole ticket being lost.
Richard Lockwood Naudain was married in Glasgow, Del., November 23, 1875, to Lillie J., daughter of Richard T. and Jeanette E. (Reed) Cann. Mrs. Naudain was born in Kirkwood, Pencader hundred. They have one child, Richard Louis, born August 19, 1876, who received his primary education in the public schools of the district and at Goldey’s Business College, Wilmington, Del. Mr. Naudain and his family are members of the Presbyterian church.
Source: Biographical and Genealogical History of the State of Delaware Containing Biographical and Genealogical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, and Many of the Early Settlers (Chambersburg, Pa.: J. M. Runk & Co., 1899, vol. 1, pp. 699-701