A Guide to the Patrick County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1803-1912 Patrick County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1803-1912 Patrick County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1803-001-1912-026

A Guide to the Patrick County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1803-1912

A Collection in
the Library of Virginia
Chancery Records Index: Patrick County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1803-001-1912-026


Library of Virginia

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© 2016 By The Library of Virginia. All Rights Reserved.

Processed by: Sherri Bagley

The Library of Virginia
Chancery Records Index
Patrick County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1803-001-1912-026
Patrick County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1803-1912
Physical Characteristics
Digital images
Patrick County (Va.) Circuit Court
Library of Virginia

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Use Restrictions

Patrons are to use digital images of Patrick County (Va.) Chancery Causes found on the Chancery Records Index available electronically at the website of the Library of Virginia.

Preferred Citation

Patrick County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1803-1912. (Cite style of suit and chancery index no.). Local Government Records Collection, Patrick County Court Records. The Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia.

Acquisition Information

Digital images were generated by Backstage Library Works 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.

Patrick County, like Henry County, was named for Patrick Henry, who was the first governor of the commonwealth of Virginia. It was formed from Henry County by a statute adopted on 26 November 1790. The county court first met on 13 June 1791. Part of Henry County was added to Patrick in 1791. The county seat is Stuart.

Scope and Content

Patrick County (Va.) Chancery Causes, 1803-1912, 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.

Chancery cases 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 Patrick County 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 found on the Library of Virginia web site for the chancery records of other Virginia localities.

Index Terms

Adjunct Descriptive Data

Significant Places Associated With the Collection

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Selected Suits of Interest

1832-001: Abner W. Scales vs. John Scales:

The orator charges that the slaves are the only resource to which he can look for payment of his debt.

1841-009: Elizabeth Beasley vs. Exr. of Thomas Beasley:

Thomas Beasley was having an affair with a free woman of color and had children by her. It was noted in the bill that there was a will, but no will was found with the case.

1844-001: Herbert Shelton vs. James W. Warhoop, etc.:

The defendant held as an apprentice, a mulatto boy named Alexander bound to him by the Overseers of the Poor. He took Alexander to North Carolina and tried to sell him.

1846-017: Velinda Cummings, etc. vs. Adms. of David Taylor, etc.:

A slave named Hannah was to be emancipated, but passed away when James Taylor's widow did.

1870-016: Elizabeth B. Taylor by another. vs. James B. Taylor:

The plaintiff is filing for a divorce because her husband was having an affair with an African American woman and several other women.

1879-041: Susan Vest vs. John Howell, etc., Notley P. Adams, etc. vs. Polly Vest, etc., Admr. of Zephemia T. Dehart, etc. vs. Susan Vest, etc.:

Referenes slaves carried off to parts unknown and sold. There is an affidavit that stated that a Negro woman was arrested in Floyd Co. as a runaway slave. She belonged to Henry Rakes estate.

1881-029: Samuel Wood vs. Betty Wood:

Wife states that she would rather be married to a Negro man than to be married to her husband.

1883-007: Admr. of Thomas J. Hatcher, etc. vs. Admx. of David D. Hatcher, etc.:

The cause concerns five slaves sold at a public auction before the Civil War belonging to the estate and realized therefore a sum amounting to at least three thousand dollars. The suit includes depositions regarding the slaves. Also references to slave traders taking slaves to Georgia to be sold.