Younger brother of
A H Ritchie
, and largely self-taught, he assisted his brother with numerous
portrait busts and architectural sculpture in Edinburgh.
In the 1830s, he was involved in the production of three commemorative statues in Glasgow:
The William McGavin Memorial, Necropolis, carved by Robert Forrest (1834); the
Sir Walter Scott Memorial, George Square, modelled by John Greenshields (1838) and
the Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Hope Pattison Memorial, Necropolis (1838).
In Edinburgh, he was one of many sculptors who produced statues for the Scott Monument in
Princes Street Gardens, his contribution being The Last Minstrel (1846).
After receiving a commission to enlarge his earlier plaster group, The Flood (1832, exhibited at the RA
, 1840) in marble,
Ritchie visited Rome to complete the project, but died of malaria two months after arriving there, on 30th November, 1850.
He exhibited fancy pieces and narrative works at the RSA
, 1832-50, and his marble statue of A Poetess was
exhibited at the Great Exhibition of 1851.