John George Richardson was born in Carlisle, Cumberland, England on 26 May 1885. He was the son of Scottish-born parents John Richardson, a master mariner, and the former Mary Dick. He also had two sisters.
The Richardson family moved to Tranmere, Cheshire sometime around late 1890 and by the time of the 1901 census they lived at 27 Well Lane in Birkenhead and Richard was described as an apprentice mechanical engineer. When he first went to sea is not certain but he appears on crew lists as early as February 1907 when he was senior 4th engineer aboard the Campania.
John was married in 1904 to Florence Emily Ellis (b. 1883) and with the couple having three children, two surviving infancy, sons Kenneth and George. By 1911 the family lived at 16 Church Terrace in Tranmere.
In April 1912 Richardson was serving as 6th engineer aboard the eastward-bound voyage of the Carpathia when that ship rescued the survivors of the Titanic.
Little else is known about Richardson’s activities following this; in the 1930s he and his wife Florence migrated to the USA, settling in Brooklyn, New York where they were still living in 1940.