The complete history of the driver is rather cloudy. The following is more than likely to be incomplete and inaccurate.
Apparently, Per Lindqvist first got a driver working with an early ATI adapter under X386 1.1a. This original driver might have actually been based on a non-functional ATI driver written by Thomas Roell (currently of Xi Graphics).
Then Doug Evans (firstname.lastname@example.org) added support for the ATI VGA Wonder XL, trying in the process to make the driver work with all other ATI adapters available at the time.
Rik Faith (email@example.com) obtained the X11R4 driver from Doug Evans in the summer of 1992 and ported the code to the X386 part of X11R5. This subsequently became part of XFree86.
I (Marc Aurele La France) took over development and maintenance of the driver in the fall of 1993 after Rik got rid of his VGA Wonder adapter.