xt7j6q1sj46j https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt7j6q1sj46j/data/mets.xml Prince George County, Virginia Historical Records Survey of Virginia 1941 Prepared by Historical Records Survey of Virginia, Division of Community Service Programs, Work Projects Administration; Virginia Conservation Commission, Sponsored; Other contributors include: United States Work Projects Administration Division of Community Service Programs; xiii, 276 pages, diagrams; Mimeographed; Cover printed; Includes Appendices, listing Prince George County land patents, grants, surveys, inventories, burgesses, found in the Virginia Land Office and Virginia State Library, Archives Division; UK holds archival copy for ASERL Collaborative Federal Depository Program libraries; Call number FW 4.14:V 819/75 books English Richmond, Virginia: Historical Records Survey of Virginia This digital resource may be freely searched and displayed in accordance with U. S. copyright laws. Virginia Works Progress Administration Publications Inventory of the County Archives of Virginia, Number 75 Prince George County (Prince George Courthouse) text Inventory of the County Archives of Virginia, Number 75 Prince George County (Prince George Courthouse) 1941 1941 2015 true xt7j6q1sj46j section xt7j6q1sj46j     R ii A —    “    Ii   I
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Prepared by
The Historical Records Survey of Virginia
Division of Community Service Programs
work Projects Administration
Sponsored by
The Virginia Conservation Commission
Richmond, Virginia
The Historical Records Survey of Virginia
g October 1941

 1 `  
1 Historical Records Survey Projects  
'l Sargent B. Child, Director
*¤ Kathleen Bruce, State Supervisor
¥ Research and Records Programs
M Harvey E. Becknell, Director
' Milton W. Blanton, Regional Supervisor
E James A. McAleer, State Supervisor
M Division of Community Service Programs
5 i*r 
it Florence Kerr, Assistant Commissioner
Q` Blanche M. Ralston, Chief Regional Supervisor
;‘ Ella G. Agnew, State Director
F1 `
} Howard O. Hunter, Commissioner D
Li Roy Schroder, Regional Director Q
V Russell S. Hummel, State Administrator Q
ki _ _  

The Inventory gf the County archives gf yigginia is one of a number of
guides to historical materials prepared throughout the United States by work-
ers on Historical Records Survey projects of the Work Projects Administration.
The publication herewith presented, an inventory of the archives of Prince
George County, is number 75 of the Virginia series.
The Historical Records Survey program was undertaken in the winter of
1955-56 for the purpose of providing useful employment to needy unemployed
historians, lawyers, teachers, and research and clerical workers. In carry-
ing out this objective, the project was organized to compile inventories of
historical materials, particularly the unpublished government documents and
records which are basic in the administration of local governments, and which
provide invaluable data for students of political, economic, and social his-
tory. Up to the present time approximately l,4OG survey publications have l
been issued throughout the country. The archival guide herewith presented is
intended to meet the requirements of the day—to-day administration by the
officials of the county, and also the needs of lawyers, businessmen, and other
citizens who require facts from the public records for the proper conduct of
their affairs. The volume is so designed that it can be used by the histor-
ian in his research in unprinted sources in the same way he uses the library
card catalog for printed sources.
The inventories produced by Historical Records Survey projects attempt
to do more than give merely a list of records — they attempt further to sketch
in the historical background of the county or other unit of government, and
to describe precisely and in detail the organization and functions of the
government agencies whose records they list. The county, town, and other
local inventories for the entire country will, when completed, constitute an
encyclopedia of local government as well as a bibliography of local archives.
The successful conclusion of the work of Historical Records Survey
projects, even in a single county, would not be possible without the support
of public officials, historical and legal specialists, and many other groups
in the community. Their cooperation is gratefully acknowledged.
The Survey program was organized by Luther H. Evans, who served as
Director until March l, 1940, when he was succeeded by Sargent B. Child.
The survey operates as a Nation-wide series of locally sponsored projects
in the Division of Community Service Programs, of which Mrs. Florence Kerr,
Assistant Commissioner is in charge.
Acting Commissioner of
Work Projects

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In January 1956, the Historical Records Survey, a nation—wide project
of the Works Progress Administration, now the Work Projects Administration,
was organized nationally. Dr. Luther H. Evans was appointed National Direc-
tor of the Survey. In March 1956, the Survey began to function in Virginia
as part of the Federal`Writers' Project, of which Dr. H. J. Eckenrode was
State Director, and Dr. Lester J. Cappon of the University of Virginia part-
time Technical Assistant. In November 1956, when the Historical Records
Survey became independent of the Federa1`Writers' Project, Dr. Cappon was
appointed part-time State Director. At the same time Miss Elizabeth B.
Parker, a former supervisor of the Survey, was appointed Assistant State
Director. When Dr. Gappon resigned in June 1957, Miss Parker succeeded hhn
as State Director. On September 5, 1959, the Historical Records Survey of
Virginia became a State—wide non-Federal project, with Miss Parker as State
Likewise in January 1955 the Survey of Federal Archives, a nation-wide
project of the Works Progress Administration, now the Work Projects Admin-
istration, was organized under the national dircctorship of Dr. Philip M.
Hamer, an official of the National Archives, Washington, D. C. In Febru-
ary 1956, work was started in Virginia with hr. T. C. Durham as Regional
Director. In September 1956, Dr. Kathleen Bruce was appointed Regional
Director to succeed Mr. Durhmn. On August 1, 1957, the Survey of Federal
p Archives of Virginia became a State—wide non—Federa1 project, with Dr.
Bruce as State Director.
0n January 1, 1940, the two projects, the Survey of Federal Archives
and the Historical Records Survey of Virginia, were consolidated by the
Work Projects Administration to constitute a new Historical Records Survey
project. Dr. Bruce was appointed State Supervisor, and Miss Parker, Assist-
ant State Supervisor. Miss Parker resigned from the Historical Records
Survey on April 29, 1940.
Mrs. Helen D. Bullock was appointed Assistant State Supervisor on June
24, 1940. Mrs. Bullock resigned from the project on September 19, 1940.
On January 20, 1941, Dr. Katharine Elizabeth Crane succeeded Mrs. Bullock
as Assistant State Supervisor.
By authority of the Presidential Letter, E-256, October 18, 1940, the
Historical Records Survey is authorized to "conduct a survey and prepare for
duplication inventories of all official records of the counties and of the
Federal Government (except the Post Office) within the State; conduct a
survey and prepare for duplication inventories of the records of the churches
of all denominations within the State; and copy the imprints of all materials,
printed before 1877 within the present boundaries of the United States, which
are in the custody of all public, semi-public, and notable private libraries
within the state . "
· The objective is to make contributions of public value. With this in
view, the Historical Records Survey of Virginia has surveyed approximately
Q 5,000 series of county records in 19 counties, and published in 7 volumes
Q the inventories of the archives of 7 counties; it has published 4 volumes
t on church archives; it has surveyed the official records ofabout 600
Federal agencies in Virginia and has published inventories respectively

of the archives of the Department of Justice and of the Department of Agri- lf
culture; and it has catalogued for the American Imprints Inventory 72,475 Q
p volumes from public and semi-public libraries in the State. It is hoped {
that these surveys will be of material service to investigators and that 2
they will stimulate further careful research into the history and develop-
ment of one of the oldest states in the Union in whose history and institu-
I tions lie the roots of the history and institutions of so many of the other
I states. It is gratifying not only to the members of the supervisory staff y
but to those workers on the project past and present who gave or are giving I
" their best skills to the work to know that it is achieving practical results.
_ For example, in a number of instances it has stimulated officials to employ 7
# more care in using and in preserving the records; field workers, particular-
, ly in the survey of federal archives, have been able to aid officials who ?
” in an emergency needed some old stored record which they were unable to
L find; and county superintendents of schools in various counties have assur-
i ed the county board of supervisors of the wisdom of contributing to the
I non-labor funds required for publishing the volume on county archives on
k the ground of its basic value to the schools. ‘
' The inventory of the records of Prince George County is one of these
2 volumes in the series entitled Inventory gf thg County Archives gf Virginia t
M which is designed to provide for each county a separate volume dealing with
L its surviving records. The numbering of the county inventories corresponds
B with the alphabetical sequence of the counties of the State. Thus the volume ’
M on the Prince George County archives is number 75 of the series. In it I
, the records are classified according to the agencies in whose activities »
x they originated or to which they have been sent for temporary or permanent r
t_ maintenance. A notable instance of an agency which has in ite custody the
{ records of another agency is the circuit court to which all the original I
»~ wills and all the records pertaining to probate and fiduciary matters were
M transferred when the county court was abolished in 1904. Many of these
7 records in the older counties antedate the establishment of the circuit
° court. All records are described in a formalized style which gives the
t following information: title of record, dates for which available, quantity,
l labeling of volumes or containers, variant titles, description of contents
_ of record, manner in which the record is arranged, indexed, and recorded,
x and the size of volumes or containers and their location. In addition to
Q listing and describing the existing records of the county through 1940, the
yl volume contains a brief account of the origins and functions of each office,
M a short essay on buildings, one on the governmental organization and records
t system of the State, and a historical sketch of the county based on original
L sources.
i The survey of the records of Prince George County was begun under Miss _
M Parker’s direction. After Dr. Bruce took charge of the consolidated State A
L project, Mr. Francis Morris rechecked it and completed it under the immediate
{ supervision of Mr. Pinckney H. Walker. The entries were written by Mrs.
{ Frances L. Beasley and Mrs. Louise H. Macon under the immediate supervision _
R of Mr. walker and Mr. Ellis Miller, Jr. But since Mr. Walker left the proj- _
t; ect at the end of June 1940 and Mr. Miller early in August of the same year, Q
2 the greater share of credit for checking and rechecking the entries belongs f
yi to Mrs. Beasley, who is still a member of the staff. Mrs. Bullock prepared ,q
Q the appendix. She also reedited the entries, and with the assistance of ig
~ Mr. N. Hamilton Enslow arranged them in their present sequence. A final {
editing of the entries was made by Dr. Bruce. E

The present administration is indebted wholly to the administration of
‘ Miss Parker for the Governmental Organization and Records System essay.
This essay which has been shortened but otherwise unchanged appeared under
that title in the Isle of Wight volume. It has not been checked by the
present administration. Mr. walker and Mr. Enslow wrote the office essays
y which precede each office section, and Mr. Enslow the Housing, Care, and
Accessibility of Records essay. Dr. Bruce edited the essays and is responsi-
_ ble for the first five pages of the Historical Sketch and for some other parts
’S of it, as well as for its editing. Dr. Crane wrote most of the Historical
, ° Sketch and undertook the final assembling of the volume. Mr. Morgan P.
__ Robinson of the Archives Division, the Virginia State Library, kindly read
that part of the Historical Sketch which deals with the colonial period,
but he is in no way responsible for anything said in it. Finally, acknowl-
edgment must be made for helpful editorial criticism of this inventory in
. manuscript form offered by Miss Louise Boynton, assistant editor in charge
of public records inventories, of the Central office, Washington, D, C.
To the officials of Prince George County the project is indebted in
more ways than one. The clerk, Mr. George R. Walters, has been constantly
helpful in making the records more conveniently available to the workers
E and in giving the workers constructive criticism. Mr. R. W. Copeland,
superintendent of schools of Prince George County, read and approved the
5 Historical Sketch. Both Mr. Walters and Mr. Copeland appeared before the
lme board of supervisors to testify to their desire to have the county contri-
bute to the non-labor fund for the publication of the work. The board of
supervisors gave their earnest attention to the matter and after discussion
voted the appropriation without which the volume could not have been pub-
lished. The members of the board were Messrs. Jordan A. Wood, chairman,
W. B. Baird, F. E. Hair, Henry J. Henn, w. R. Horne, and Andrew Moncol.
The edition is limited to a comparatively small number of copies.
Under contract with the board of supervisors, twenty-five copies are des-
ignated for the clerk of the county for disposition by the county. The
Y’ remainder are for distribution to certain government agencies within the
State and to public and semi-public libraries throughout the United States.
Publications previously issued by this project are listed on page 276
6 of this volume.
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Explanatory Notes
Titles gf Qgpords. Exact titles of records are
written ih solid capitals without brackets (as in
entry l). In the absence of titles, descriptive titles
have been assigned, which are written in solid capitals
and enclosed in brackets (as in entry 3). If a record
title is not descriptive of the contents of the record,
an assigned explanatory title (or explanatory words),
written with initial capitals and enclosed in brackets,
has been added (as in entry 6). The current or most
recent title of a record is used as the entry title and
title variation is indicated (as in entry 2).
Dates. All dates used are inclusive. Missing
records are indicated by broken dates.
Quantity. When two or more types of containers
are considered in a single entry, the quantity is shown
in chronological order, insofar as possible.
Labeling. Figures or letters in parentheses, fol-
lowing the number of volumes, file boxes, or other type
of container, indicate the labeling. If no labeling is
indicated, it may be assumed that there is none.
3) Discontinuance. Where no statement is made that
the record was discontinued at the last date shown in
the entry, it could not be definitely established that
such was the case. Where no comment is made on the ab-
_ sence of prior, subsequent, or intermediate records, no
{ definite information could be obtained.
Description gg Records. The description of the con-
tents of a record applies only to the current or most

- recent record unless change in contents is actually shown t
t in a record entry. Q
Indexing. All indexes to records, unless otherwise “
I, stated, are self-contained.
{ Condition gf Records. Records are in good condition
*i unless otherwise indicated.
Dimensions. Dimensions are always given in inches,
4 unless otherwise indicated, and, therefore, the symbol for
* inches (") is omitted.
; Location. The locations given for the records are the
ti locations at the time the survey was made. These are subject
5* to change as records are often moved. Prince George County
g records now in the archives division of the Virginia State
I Library have been included in this inventory only to fill
` gaps in records located in the county depository.
1- Cross References. Separate third-paragraph cross re-
ii erences from entry to entry are used to show prior and sub-
}_ sequent records, and original and copies of records; ggg
lt entries 20, 25, 26, and 30. If there are entries related in
[N subject matter to entries under other subject headings, cross-
\I references are used under the subject headings as follows:
7 Elections, ggg glgg entries 80 and 170. If a record does
’; not have a sélf—contained index, a cross—reference is made;
l“ for example, ggg entries 26, 27, 28, 29, 32, and 33.
a" Miscellaneous. In connection with the use of the terms
t constitutional and statutory, it is to be noted that the con-
A stitutional provisions concerning county offices and county
* government may or may not be mandatory. Practice, therefore,
f may vary from one county to another. Throughout this book
@» the situation in Prince George County alone has been con-
f sidered,
y The spelling of local place names follows, for the
f most part, what seems to be the preponderance of usage as
V indicated in E, G. Swem, Virginia Qistorical Index. A few
3 spellings, notably that of Flowerdew Hundred and Merchants
M Hope, follow what is obviously historically correct. Indian
K names are spelled according to F. W. Hodge, Handbook gf
t American Indians.
> ?

Abbreviations, Symbols, and Explanatory Notes. ........ . ....... .. viii
C I General
1•   Ska-hCh|I•I•••|O••••••••••|•••••••••••••••••••• 1
2. Governmental Organization and Records System...... ...... . 36
Chart of County Government............................ 49
3. Housing, Caro, and Accessibility of the Records.......... 51
County Offices and Their Records
I. Board of Supervisors......... .... ........... .... ......... 57
Papers for approval and proceedings. Financial:
warrants; reports and audits. Taxation.
Deeds. Liens: real property; personal property.
Taxation: real property; personal property.
Corporations. Partnerships. Conservation. Vital
Statistics. Registers. Military. Elections:
candidates; voters. Correspondence.
III• Circuit COU.I°`t·••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••  
Chancery: case papers; dockots and proceedings.
Common Law: case papers; dookets. Judgments; _
county and circuit court; justice of the peace
and trial justice. Executions. Witnesses.
Warrants. Probate: wills; fiduciary. Oaths.
Pardons. Bonds: official; fiduciary and ndscels
lanoeus. Lunscy. Land on which Taxes Delinquent.
Financial: fees; collections and disbursements.
Citizenship. Reports and records.
Iv!   COUI"t·•••••••••••••••••..•••...•...•..••••••••••••.  
Chancery. Common law. Judgments. Executions.
Financial. Witnesses. Condemnation proceedings.
Roads. Bonds.
v• COmmOHW€B.l`h}]‘S AttOrI'].Gy¤•••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••  
Case papers. Dockets. Financial. Correspondence.
VII• JuS·t•j.C9 of 12118 P6&C9•••.•.•.•••••••.•••••••••.•.•......•.  

  Page y
I1   Sh€ri.ff••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••  
m Miscellaneous Papers. Financial. Jail.
Q XI. Commissioner of the Revenue. .... ... ......... ......... 136 I
{ Tax assessment. Licenses. Reports.
i~ XIII. Local Board of Equalizati0n.......................... 144
` Accounts: collections and receipts; journals,
I cash books, und ledgers; stwtemonts, settle- ,
V ments, and reports; general fund; sanitary
7 district funds; checks and bank statements.
Q, Taxation: real property; real property on
g which taxes delinquent; personal property
5 and income; personal property, delinquent
yl taxes; capitation; licenses. Miscellaneous.
Q, XV. County Finance Board....... ............. .. .... ....... 171
VJ XVI. County Electoral Board., ........ . ..... ............... 172
{J XVII. School Trustee Electoral Board....................... 173
{ Proceedings. Financial.
X XIX. Division Superintendent of 3chools................... 177
in Financial. Pupil Records. Reports.
E XX. Local Board of Public Welfare (Overseers of the Poor) l8l
{ Proceedings. Financial. Federal Agencies.
E Correspondence.
E XXI. Superintendent of the Poor. ........ .. .... ............ 188
  XXIV. COLIHLY   Unj.t•••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••   I
Q XXV. County Surveyor.....................................• 194 I
u F
yg XXVI. Tobacco Inspector., ......... . ...... ... .... ........... 195 1
Q Contracts. Reports. Correspondence.
K. _

XXVIII. Home Demonstration Agent.............................. 199
XXIX. Game WBrden........................................... 201
XXX. County k&1itia........................................ 202
Bibliography....................... ..... .............. 203
Appendix.............................................· 213
Chronological Index................................... 261
Subject Index............................••.........•. 264
‘ List of Pub1ic&tious.... .... .................L........ 276

 [ (First entry, p. es) ‘ _
r L HM%m&S@NH
On March 8, 1702, Anne Stuart, younger daughter of James II of
England, ascended the throne from which in 1685 her father ran away. In
the following August, the General Assembly of Virginia divided Charles
City County and ordered that Prince George County be organized, after April
23, 1703, o. s., to include all that portion of Charles City County which
lay south of James River.l Since Queen Anne was married to Prince George
of Denmark, it would seem that the General Assembly, in naming the new
county “Prince George," named it after the Prince Consort, with the in-
tention of telling the world that the people of Virginia opposed the claim
to the throne of the Stuart Pretender. As was their custom, the General
Assembly did not state in the act any substantial reason for their choice
of the name, It is significant to discover, if possible, why Prince George
County was created in 1702, other than for the reason given, which was to
save the inhabitants south of the James from thc "Sundry & diverse incon-
veniences" of attending courts and public meetings across the James River.2
The region organized in 1703 as Prince George County was not a typical
frontier. Already along the river front there had been some agricultural
settlement for almost a century, and the beginnings of a capitalistic fur
trade for about a quarter of a century. The cultivation of tobacco and the
fur trade with the Indians were the earliest economic bases for the develop-
ment of the section, which, as far as can be determined from the fragmentary
~ early Charles City records, skipped the cattle raising, farming stage of the
famous Frederick Jackson Turner theory of the evolution of any American
frontier. Although it was nearly a hundred miles by river from the capital
i city of Jamestown, and also from Williamsburg to which the capitol was removed
in 1699, the eastern portion of the new county bordered James River and con-
tained numerous tributaries of the James. It also bordered the Appomattox,
a great tributary of the James. Thus men might sail from their own landings
to a waiting ship bound for Europe, or direct to Jamestown, or down the
James to Archers Hope Creek and up the creek to Princess Anne Port within a
mile of Williamsburg. and so the settlement of the region went steadily on
as men struggled to push back the Indians, to grow tobacco and get it to
market, and to direct and finance trading expeditions far down into the
southern mountains.
The development of this particular region conformed with the typical de-
velopment of the seventeenth century, which historians now recognize as one
of the pivotal periods in world history, not only politically but economically.
1. William Waller Hening, Thg Statutgg at Large; Being g C0llGGti0¤ gi A11
gag Laws gf Virginia, {Egg tgg First Qggsggg gf thg Legislature gg thg
Xggg 1612, III, 223, hereinafter cited as Hening, Statutes, only men-
tions the existence of the act without quoting it; for some years the
text was believed to be lost, but it was recovered and appears in Morgan
Peitiaux Robinson, Virginia Qpunties: Those Resulting {gpm Virginia
Q Legislation, p. 199, as copied from the Colonial Office Papers in the
C Public Record Office in London.
2. 1§1Q.; the county was first represented in thc Assembly on April 24,
j 1704, Henry Read Mcllwaine, Journals gf thg Qggsg gf Burgesses, 1§1§—
11ZQ, vol. 1703-12, p. 48, hereinafter cited as Journals gf thg §. gi Q.

 I Th
ii 2 PRINCE GEORGE COUNTY, VIRGINIA (First entry, p. 58) lg (3
%, IIA,
y' Primarily it was a period of great business expansion.- Probably never before ,§§ P,
or since have men taken greater risks in venturing life and capital to secure gg P,
quick profits, Abundant opportunities presented themselves on account of the tg H,
discoveries in Asia and America and because of the development of Stock ¤0mP¤* f ax
I nies for trade and colonization. V ez
. . _' S(
' Fur Trade and Exploration E;
·; ?; · FE
Implicit in the American adventures throughout the seventeenth ¤€¤t¤PY if T1
( was the determination to make every possible effort to find a short waterway pi Im
* across the continent, to discover gold and silver mines, and to wrest from ; t1
if the French the profitable Indian trade. Into the seventeenth century as E le
l.»·l thus understood the explorations and trading activities promoted by Charles A 1;
i` II and his friends appear to fit. The southern base for preliminary explo- ‘
l" rations and for a prosperous Indian trade was Fort Henry in Virginia at the `
falls of the Appomattox River, later called Fort Wood. The site of the fort O1
is some unknown spot in Dinwiddie County. But until Dinwiddie was formed bl
in 1752 Fort Wood, as it had long been called, was in Prince George. tl
‘ < on
1 Under the name of Fort Henry it was established in 1646 as a protection g C1
V against the Indians after the Opechancanough uprising of 1644. At that time · gy
U the Virginia Assembly provided for a fort at the falls of each of the four S` o1
{ principal rivers in the colony. Captain Abraham Wood was appointed to coms v' re
l mand Fort Henry and protect the settlers on the south side of the riversl Y De
t Two years later he offered to maintain the fort at his own expense in return g
A for a grant of 600 acres of land, the fort as it stood, and certain tax exe 3
ij emptions.2 His offer was accepted, and in time Fort Henry with its sur- _ j u]
if rounding land, boats, and other equipment passed permanently to Wood, who { Fx
ij was thoroughly alive to the possibility that exploration would open up a g PI
{ thriving trade with the distant southern Indians and who was financially y B1
¤» able to support fairly widespread activities,3 4In 1550, while Bgpkglsy was (Q SL
h still in Virginia as Governor of the colony, Wood and Edward Bland led a § 15
Q private party on a trip of exploration as far as the junction of the Dan and ls bL
y the Staunton Rivers at Occaneechi Island, but, during the period of the Com- Q l?
Q monwealth, nothing further was done to open up the southern Indian trade.4 E SJ
Q When Berkeley returne