MBTI Type: ESFJ
Richard and his son conflict a great deal, because of their opposing viewpoints – Abe is a Fi, and approaches things through a personal values system, whereas Richard sees things and acts on them, based on the impact it has on the entire township. He makes all his decisions with a ‘group’ in mind – the local farmers, the people of the community, and for their greater moral welfare. Out of a sense of duty and loyalty to the British, he becomes a peacemaker in-between the townspeople and their occupiers. When Major Hewlett, in a foolish show of overt-authority, demands to use the church as his personal office and stable, and that they tear up the cemetery to use the headstones as protection, Woodhull offers his own dead son’s stone first, knowing the community will see that as a peaceful surrender and hopefully follow suit, thus preventing any British antagonism and violence. But this open minded, and in Abe’s opinion “lack of a spine” sometimes causes others to see him as pro-British. Unlike those who follow Washington, Richard sees no need to upset everything through a war, through resistance, or by making a reckless stand. He also knows how the system works, and how to game it – such as when he agrees to prosecute his son at a trial and prolongs it, to give his actual plan (informing a British officer of Simcoe overstepping his bounds) time to save Abe’s life. He performs a similar office a second time, when he “accidentally” brings together the British soldiers and a local group of farmers, who then demand to discuss terms of trade… giving Benjamin Talmadge, Caleb Brewster, and others time to storm the unguarded fort and burn down all the haystacks intended to fuel the British army through the winter. His extensive knowledge of the judicial system comes in handy numerous times. His tert-Ne is also quite adept at figuring out his son’s true intentions, in guessing accurately that he is a Patriot spy, and in seeing the negative consequences this will wreak on everyone around him (Fe/Ne). Staunchly opinionated, fiercely open about how he feels about things, and able to make nice with anyone he meets, Richard takes a long time to alter his views about morality, and the rightness of what he is doing, or to consider changing his mind about the crown. A learned and intelligent man, he does not spend any time questioning his own conclusions, showing his over-reliance on them and his inferior Ti issues.
Enneagram: 1w2 so/sp
Abe thinks his father a coward and spineless; the truth is, Richard has an ironclad sense of moral principles, which will not allow him to participate in illegal activities. He can be somewhat hard-nosed, in his refusal to accommodate his son’s illegal actions. He moralizes at him, for not taking better care of his family and putting them at risk, at one point opening up his home to Mary and the child. Several times, he endangers them indirectly by not protecting his son. At one point, Simcoe knows his ideals and adherence to duty are so strong, that he can convince him to prosecute his own son – because the law demands it. So Richard does… but finds he cannot condemn Abe to death, and encourages others to join him in refusing to see him die. He often finds his son’s 8 methods to be “immoral.” His 2 wing defends all he does as for the good of the community. Richard does not want Abe’s actions to in any way harm his neighbors (he will not participate in one scheme, until he knows the farms will be compensated for their goods, whether or not the British ever get to ship them upriver).