On the 1st of January 1848, Edward Richardson opened premises formerly occupied by Thomas Kerr at Muswellbrook to be known as the Tradesman's Arms.
He took over the Albert Hotel from Samuel Caldwell in Aberdeen in December 1849.
Edward Richardson was granted a licence for the Muswellbrook Inn in September 1854
At the quarterly meeting of magistrates to take into consideration applications of publican's general licences there were two applications for general licences; Mr. Hugh McAuley for the Family Hotel and Edward Richardson for the Muswellbrook Inn; both applications being opposed by Mr. Fox chief Constable, on the following grounds -
1). That there were already too many public houses in Muswellbrook ;
2). That the applicants resided only two roods distant from each other,
3). That there was now a licenced house within a few yards of the applicants' residences, and five others in the township;
4). That so many licenced houses were not necessary on the contrary, when situated so close together as these houses were, if licenced, they would become nuisance to respectable travellers, and to the sober inhabitants of th town.
The majority of the Bench refused McAuley's licence and granted Richardson's.