A Guide to the Bedford County (Va.) County Court Minute Book and Free Negro Register, 1861-1873 Bedford County (Va.) Minute Book, 1861-1873 Barcode number 1099278/ Bedford County (Va.) Reel 243

A Guide to the Bedford County (Va.) County Court Minute Book and Free Negro Register, 1861-1873

A Collection in
the Library of Virginia
Collection numbers: Barcode number 1099278/ Bedford County (Va.) Reel 243


Library of Virginia

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

Processed by: Library of Virginia staff

The Library of Virginia
Collection numbers
Barcode number 1099278/ Bedford County (Va.) Reel 243
Bedford County (Va.) County Court Minute Book and Free Negro Register, 1861-1873
Physical Characteristics
1 v.
Bedford County (Va.) Circuit Court.
Library of Virginia

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Use Restrictions

Use microfilm, Bedford County (Va.) Reel 243.

Preferred Citation

Bedford County (Va.) Minute Book and Free Negro Register, 1861-1873. Local government records collection, Bedford County Court Records. The Library of Virginia, Richmond, Va. 23219.

Acquisition Information

This item came to the Library of Virginia in a transfer of court papers from Bedford County.

Historical Information

Bedford County was probably named for John Russell, fourth duke of Bedford, who, as secretary for state for the southern department from 1748 to 1751, had general supervision of colonial affairs. It was formed from Lunenburg County in 1753. Parts of Albemarle County were added in 1754, and an additional part of Lunenburg County was added later.

An act passed by the Virginia legislature in 1803 required every free negro or mulatto to be registered and numbered in a book to be kept by the county clerk.

Scope and Content

Bedford County (Va.) Minute Book, 1871-1873, was created by the County Court, and along with closely related court records such as order books, records all matters brought before the court when it was in session and may contain important information not found anywhere else. Generally minute books contain brief entries. A locality's loose papers are the raw materials from which this type of book was created. Like order books, a wide variety of information is found in its pages including: appointments of county officers, appointments of guardians and administrators, records of legal disputes heard before the court, and matters related to the fiscal management of the court.

The first five pages of the minute book contains the Register of Free Negroes for the years 1861-1864. The registers list the age, name, color, stature, marks or scars, in what court the person was emancipated or whether the person was born free. Some clerks recorded additional information not required by the law.


Organized chronologically.

Related Material

Additional Bedford County court records and free negro and slave records can be found on microfilm at the Library of Virginia. Consult "A Guide to Virginia County and City Records on Microfilm" found on the Library of Virginia web site.

Index Terms

Adjunct Descriptive Data

Significant Places Associated With the Collection

Back to Top