Born in Leicester, England, and raised in a working-class family, Richardson emigrated to northern Manitoba in 1911. She was influential in the women's and peace movements in both countries. Devoutly religious, she challenged orthodoxy and worked outside the mainstream churches for peace and social justice. She cofounded one of the earliest suffrage groups in Manitoba and was a key activist in peace movements during the Boer War and World War I. She also served as an information centre for international antiwar news and ran an internationally focused women's peace crusade in World War I from her Manitoba farmhouse via the post and newspaper columns. Richardson was also a gifted writer and poet. She wrote on a variety of women's movement issues for British and Canadian newspapers and magazines, including Woman's Century, the magazine of the National Council of Women of Canada. Her outcries against war, her indictment of militarism, and her call for women and men to stand together for justice were powerful messages that still have resonance today. Tragically, poor health, both mental and physical, interfered with Richardson's work and prevented her from achieving the recognition attained by feminist contemporaries such as Nellie McClung.