A Guide to the Warren County (Va.) Overseers of the Poor Records, 1830-1914 Warren County (Va.)Overseers of the Poor Records, 1830-1914 1120486-1120489

A Guide to the Warren County (Va.) Overseers of the Poor Records, 1830-1914

A Collection in
the Library of Virginia
Barcode numbers: 1120486-1120489


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The Library of Virginia
Barcode numbers
Warren County (Va.) Overseers of the Poor Records, 1830-1914
Physical Characteristics
1.4 cu. ft. (4 boxes).
Warren County (Va.) Circuit Court.
Library of Virginia

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Use Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Preferred Citation

Warren County (Va.) Overseers of the Poor Records, 1830-1914. Local government records collection, Warren County Court Records. The Library of Virginia, Richmond, Va. 23219.

Acquisition Information

These items came to the Library of Virginia in a shipment of court papers from Warren County.

Historical Information

Warren County was named for Joseph Warren, the revolutionary patriot who sent Paul Revere and William Dawes on their famous rides and who was killed at the Battle of Bunker Hill. The county was formed from Frederick and Shenandoah counties in 1836.

In 1780, the Virginia General Assembly replaced the Anglican vestries and churchwardens of the colonial period with elected bodies called Overseers of the Poor. The Overseers provided food, clothing, shelter, and medical treatment for the persons who were too poor to support themselves or too ill to provide for their basic needs. They also bound out children whose parents could not support them or who failed to educate or instruct them, as well as orphans to become apprentices. The boys learned a trade and the girls learned domestic skills.

In 1844, the General Assembly enacted laws to create poor farms overseen by boards of directors for the maintenance and education of the poor. The boards bought farms and built buildings, appointed a superintendant for each poor farm, and chose a physician to attend the sick and teachers to educate the children. The adults and older children were required to work if they were able.

In order to control the population of certain animals in a locale, citizens were allowed to kill them. They took the scalps of the animals to court and the court paid them for the scalps. In Warren County, hawks, owls, wild cats, gray foxes, red foxes, and minks were the animals killed for payment. Scalps Claims are voucher stating the type and number of scalps and the name of the person submitting the voucher.

Sheep Claims are records of sheep killed or bitten by dogs. The bodies of the sheep were examined by the court and the owners were reimbursed for the animals killed or injured by a dog.

Scope and Content

Warren County (Va.) Overseers of the Poor Records, 1830-1914, consists of Orphan Bindings, also known as apprentice indentures, Accounts & Vouchers, Records, Poor Levy, Accounts allowed and Reports. Also included in Box 4 are Scalps, Sheep Claims, Election vouchers, Board of Supervisors Allowed General Accounts.

Warren County (Va.) Apprentice Indentures, 1830-1882, are bonds and contracts of apprenticeship, showing the names of master and apprentice, the trade to be taught, details of the contract, the amount of the bond and the names of sureties. Many pre-1866 apprentice indentures involve free African Americans.

Related Material

Additional Warren County Court Records can be found on microfilm at the Library of Virginia. Consult "A Guide to Virginia County and City Records on Microfilm"

Separated Material

Index Terms

    Corporate Names:

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

  • Almshouses--Virginia--Warren County--History
  • Apprentices--Virginia--Warren County
  • Poor--Employment--Virginia--Warren County
  • Poor--Virginia--Warren County
  • Public welfare--Virginia--Warren County
  • Tax collection--Virginia--Warren County
  • Geographical Names:

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

  • Local government records--Virginia--Warren County

Contents List

Barcode number 1120487: Overseers of the Poor Papers, 1830-1882

Box 1 contains orphan bindings, also known as apprentice indentures, 1830-1882. There are some undated records in these collections.

Barcode number 1120486: Overseers of the Poor Papers, 1837-1857

Box 2 contains accounts and vouchers, 1837-1857.

Barcode number 1120489: Overseers of the Poor Records, 1858-1870 (bulk 1858-1861)

Box 3 contains accounts allowed in 1870 and accounts and vouchers, 1858-1861, some of which are undated.

Barcode number 1120488: Overseers of the Poor and Miscellaneous Records, 1836-1914 (bulk 1836-1853)

Box 4 contains poor levy, insolvent and delinquent, 1836-1853; reports 1837-1849, 1851-1855, 1858-1861, and 1870; and accounts allowed for poor and medical expenses, 1913-1914. Board of Supervisor Records includes scalps claims for killing hawks, owls, wild cats, gray foxes, red foxes, and minks in 1887; sheep claims were for sheep killed or injured by dogs in 1899-1910; election vouchers for the polling place and election in 1914; and general accounts allowed in 1914.