The Library of Virginia
Published Materials for Genealogists
Look through the research guide,
Published Materials for Genealogists
(pdf), to review the types of materials of interest to family
researchers at the Library of Virginia.
Basic Genealogical Resources at the
Library of Virginia
The first U.S. census was
taken in 1790 and a census has been taken every 10 years since.
However, the censuses and indexes for Virginia for 1790, 1800,
part of 1810, and 1890 have not survived. Those for 1810–1880
and 1900–1920 are available on microfilm at the Library of
Virginia. From 1850, they list the names of all individuals in
the household on the day the census was taken. Age, sex, race,
and other types of information appear in various years.
The Commonwealth of Virginia
recorded births and deaths from 1853 through 1896 and 1912 to
the present. Marriages have been recorded at the state level
from 1853 to the present. All are in the Office of Vital Records
and Health Statistics, P.O. Box 1000, Richmond, VA 23218-1000.
Microfilm copies of the 1853–1896 birth and death registers,
1913–1939 death certificates, and 1853–1935 marriage registers
are available at the Library of Virginia. Marriages prior to
June 1853 were recorded at the local courthouse.
County and City Records:
Deeds, wills, court records, marriages,
and other types of documents recorded at the local level of
government will be found in the individual courthouses of
Virginia’s counties and independent cities. The Library of
Virginia has microfilm copies of the surviving court records
prior to 1865.
The Library has microfilm
copies of military muster rolls, service records, and/or pension
records for most Virginia soldiers who served during the
colonial wars, the American Revolution, the War of 1812, and the
Civil War. World War I History Commission questionnaires contain
biographical information about some World War I veterans living
in Virginia after the war.
Bible records primarily
consist of photocopies of original family registers found in
Bibles. There also are typed transcripts and some compilations
of Bible records by patriotic organizations such as the
Daughters of the American Revolution. These compilations usually
are identified as Miscellaneous Bible Records (MBRC).
Genealogical Notes and Charts:
This collection consists of
a wide variety of materials compiled by private citizens
interested in recording their ancestry and making their research
available to the public. The Library continues to accept
donations of genealogical materials, but we do not verify the
accuracy of the information contained therein. The Notes and
Charts are available for use in the Library of Virginia. Titles
can be found by searching for the family name as a subject.
Published Family Histories:
Many published family
histories are available for use in the Library of Virginia.
Titles can be found via by searching for the family name as a
(Please visit the Library to use these resources)
Ancestry Library Edition:
A version of the popular Ancestry.com that includes records from
the United States Census; military records; court, land and
probate records; vital and church records; directories;
passenger lists and more.
This collection assembles every extant U.S. federal census,
family genealogies, local histories, tax lists, city
directories, land and probate records, birth, marriage and death
records, genealogical and local history serials, and more.
HeritageQuest Online will grow to encompass the Periodical
Source Index (PERSI), Freedman’s Bank Records, Revolutionary War
Pension and Bounty Land Warrant Index, and additional materials.
Index to Sources on Family Coats of Arms
- A fully-searchable index to published
sources in the Library of Virginia containing information about
and illustrations of family coats of arms.
Stewart's Index to Printed Genealogies
Using the Virginia Historical Index (Swem) at the Library of
Cavaliers and Pioneers