Richard Clough Anderson was born on January 12, 1750 at Goldmine, Hanover County, Virgina, to Robert Anderson, the son of a Scottish immigrant, and Elizabeth Clough. Richard was educated at home and at the age of 16 entered into an apprenticeship with Patrick Coots, a local merchant. He served with the Hanover Minutemen and the 5th Virginia Regiment during the Revolutionary War, and participated in the early reconnaissance efforts near Trenton on Christmas Day, 1776; in June 1783, he was a charter member of the Society of the Cincinnati. Toward the end of the war, he was promoted to lieutenant colonel, and after the war he was appointed surveyor general for western lands distributed to Virginia veterans. He moved to Middletown, near Louisville, Kentucky, and became the first master of the Lexington Masonic Lodge. He died on October 15, 1826. Anderson married twice: Elizabeth Clark (m. November 24, 1787) and, following her death in 1795, Sarah Marshall (m. September 17, 1797). His son, Richard C. Anderson, Jr., became a member of the United States House of Representatives from Kentucky.