Colonel Richard Townley (died 1711) was born in England probably at Astlam (Astleham) Manor in Littleton (formerly in Middlesex, today in Surrey). He was the 8th son of Nicholas Townley of Littleton and Joanne White. He emigrated to the New World in the suite of Lord Effingham Howard, Governor of Virginia in 1683. He settled in the Elizabethtown, New Jersey area and married his 2nd wife, Elizabeth Carteret (née. Smith), widow of the 1st governor of New Jersey Sir Philip Carteret in 1685. He was one of the Privy Council of deputy governor Lord Neill Campbell in 1686. He left two sons, Charles and Effingham.