A Guide to the James City County/Williamsburg (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1934-1967 James City County/Williamsburg (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1934-1967 1182263-1182313, 1182315-1182318

A Guide to the James City County/Williamsburg (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1934-1967

A Collection in
the Library of Virginia
Barcode numbers: 1182263-1182313, 1182315-1182318


Library of Virginia

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

© 2009 By The Library of Virginia. All Rights Reserved.

Processed by: Library of Virginia staff

The Library of Virginia
Barcode numbers
1182263-1182313, 1182315-1182318
James City County/Williamsburg (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1934-1967
Physical Characteristics
54 boxes
James City County/Williamsburg (Va.) Circuit Court
State Records Center - Archives Annex, Library of Virginia

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Use Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Preferred Citation

James City County/Williamsburg (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1934-1967. (Cite style of suit and chancery index no.). Local government records collection, James City County/Williamsburg Court Records. The Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia.

Acquisition Information

These items came to the Library of Virginia in a transfer of court papers from James City County/Williamsburg under the accession number 43503.

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.

Beginning in 1770, the courts of James City County and Williamsburg shared a common courthouse.

James City County was named for King James I. It was one of the eight shires, or counties, enumerated in 1634. Subsequent additions from the Williamsburg section of York County were made in 1769, 1852, and 1880.

Williamsburg, in James City and York Counties, was established by the General Assembly as Middle Plantation in 1633. After the capitol at Jamestown burned in 1698, the assembly decided to move the capital of the colony to Middle Plantation, which was renamed Williamsburg in 1699 in honor of William III. Williamsburg was established in 1699 and declared a "city Incorporate" in 1722, although its actual status was that of a borough. It served as the capital of Virginia from 1699 until 1780. Williamsburg was incorporated as a city in 1884.

During the Civil War, the records of James City County and Williamsburg were transferred to Richmond for safekeeping but were destroyed by fire in Richmond on 3 April 1865.

Scope and Content

James City County/Williamsburg (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1934-1967, are indexed into 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. 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.


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.

Related Material

Additional James City County/Williamsburg Court Records can be found on microfilm at The Library of Virginia. Consult "A Guide to Virginia County and City Records on Microfilm."

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

See the Lost Records Localities Digital Collection available at Virginia Memory.

For more information and a listing of lost records localities see Lost Records research note .

Index Terms

    Corporate Names:

  • James City County/Williamsburg (Va.) Circuit Court.
  • Subjects:

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

  • James City County (Va.)--Genealogy.
  • James City County (Va.)--History--20th century.
  • Williamsburg (Va.)--Genealogy.
  • Williamsburg (Va.)--History--20th century.
  • Genre and Form Terms:

  • Chancery causes--Virginia--James City County.
  • Chancery causes--Virginia--Williamsburg.
  • Deeds--Virginia--James City County.
  • Deeds--Virginia--Williamsburg.
  • Judicial records--Virginia--James City County.
  • Judicial records--Virginia--Williamsburg.
  • Land records--Virginia--James City County.
  • Land records--Virginia--Williamsburg.
  • Local government records--Virginia--James City County.
  • Local government records--Virginia--Williamsburg.
  • Plats--Virginia--James City County.
  • Plats--Virginia--Williamsburg.
  • Wills--Virginia--James City County.
  • Wills--Virginia--Williamsburg.

Significant Places Associated With the Collection

  • James City County (Va.)--Genealogy.
  • James City County (Va.)--History--20th century.
  • Williamsburg (Va.)--Genealogy.
  • Williamsburg (Va.)--History--20th century.