A Guide to the Southampton County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1749-1912 Southampton County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1749-1912 Southampton County (Va.) Reels 201-284, 384-464

A Guide to the Southampton County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1749-1912

A Collection in
the Library of Virginia
Collection Numbers: Southampton County (Va.) Reels 201-284, 384-464


Library of Virginia

The Library of Virginia
800 East Broad Street
Richmond, Virginia 23219-8000
Phone: (804) 692-3888 (Archives Reference)
Fax: (804) 692-3556 (Archives Reference)
Email: archdesk@lva.virginia.gov(Archives)
URL: http://www.lva.virginia.gov/

© 2006 By The Library of Virginia. All Rights Reserved.

Processed by: John Hopewell and Louise Jones

The Library of Virginia
Collection numbers
Southampton County (Va.) Reels 201-284, 384-464
Southampton County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1749-1912
Physical Characteristics
165 microfilm reels
Southampton County (Va.) Circuit Court.
Library of Virginia

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Use Restrictions

Use microfilm copies, Southampton County (Va.) Reels 201-284, 384-464.

Preferred Citation

Southampton County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1749-1912. (Cite style of suit and chancery index no.). Local government records collection, Southampton County Court Records. The Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia.

Acquisition Information

These items came to the Library of Virginia in transfer of court papers from Southampton County.

Microfilm reels 384-464 were generated by OCLC through the Library of Virginia's Circuit Court Records Preservation Program.

Historical Information

Chancery Causes are cases of equity. According to Black's Law Dictionary they are "administered according to fairness as contrasted with the strictly formulated rules of common law." A judge, not a jury, determines the outcome of the case.

Southampton County was formed in 1749 from Isle of Wight County. Part of Nansemond County was added in 1785.

Scope and Content

Southampton County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1749-1912, are indexed into the the Chancery Records Index. Cases are identified by style of suit consisting of plaintiff and defendant names. Surnames of others involved in a suit, including secondary plaintiffs and defendants, witnesses, deponents and affiants, and family members with surnames different from the plaintiff or defendant are indexed. Entries also include the reel number and image number of where each chancery suit can be found on microfilm. Chancery causes often involved the following: divisions of estates or land, disputes over wills, divorces, debt, and business disputes. Predominant documents found in chancery causes include bills (plaintiff's complaint), answers (defendant's response), decrees (court's decision), depositions, affidavits, correspondence, lists of heirs, deeds, wills, slave records, business records or vital statistics, among other items. Plats, if present, are noted, as are wills from localities with an incomplete record of wills or localities other than the one being indexed.

Chancery causes are useful when researching local history, genealogical information, and land or estate divisions. They are a valuable source of local, state, social, and legal history and serve as a primary source for understanding a locality's history.


Organized by case, of which each is assigned a unique index number comprised of the latest year found in case and a sequentially increasing 3-digit number assigned by the processor as cases for that year are found. Arranged chronologically.

Arrangement of documents within each folder are as follows: Bill, Answer, and Final Decree (if found.)

Related Material

Additional Southampton County Court Records can be found on microfilm at The Library of Virginia. See A Guide to Virginia County and City Records on Microfilm

See the Chancery Records Index to search for chancery suits of additional Virginia localities.

Separated Material

Index Terms

    Corporate Names:

  • Southampton County (Va.) Circuit Court.
  • Subjects:

  • African Americans--History.
  • Business enterprises--Virginia--Southampton County.
  • Debt--Virginia--Southampton County.
  • Divorce suits--Virginia--Southampton County.
  • Equity--Virginia--Southampton County.
  • Estates (Law)--Virginia--Southampton County.
  • Land subdivision--Virginia--Southampton County.
  • Geographical Names:

  • Southampton County (Va.)--Genealogy.
  • Southampton County (Va.)--History.
  • Genre and Form Terms:

  • Chancery causes--Virginia--Southampton County.
  • Deeds--Virginia--Southampton County.
  • Judicial records--Virginia--Southampton County.
  • Land records--Virginia--Southampton County.
  • Local government records--Virginia--Southampton County.
  • Plats--Virginia--Southampton County.
  • Wills--Virginia--Southampton County.

Significant Places Associated With the Collection

  • Southampton County (Va.)--Genealogy.
  • Southampton County (Va.)--History.