The Resource Brunswick County (Va) Coroners' Inquisitions

Brunswick County (Va) Coroners' Inquisitions

Label
Brunswick County (Va) Coroners' Inquisitions, 1801-1947
Title
Brunswick County (Va) Coroners' Inquisitions
Inclusive dates
1801-1947
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
Brunswick County (Va) Coroners' Inquisitions, 1801-1947, are investigations into the deaths of individuals who died by a sudden, violent, unnatural or suspicious manner, or died without medical attendance. Causes of death found in coroners' inquisitions include murder, infanticide, suicide, domestic violence, exposure to elements, drownings, train accidents, automobile accidents, and natural causes, or as commonly referred to in the 19th century, visitation by God. Documents commonly found in coroners' inquests include the inquisition, depositions, and summons. Criminal papers such as recognizance bonds can be found in coroner inquisitions. Information found in the inquisition include the name of the coroner, the names of the jurors, the name and age of the deceased if known, gender and race of the deceased, and when, how, and by what means the deceased came to his or her death. If the deceased was African American, the inquest would identify the deceased as a slave or free person if known. If the deceased was a slave, the inquest would include, if known, the name of the slaveowner and the slaveowner's residence. Information found in the depositions include the name of the deponent and his or her account of the circumstances that led to the death of the deceased. Slaves were deponents in coroner investigations
Member of
Action
Described
Biographical or historical data
  • Brunswick County was named for the duchy of Brunswick-Luneburg, one of the German possessions of King George I. It was formed by statute in 1720 from Prince George County and on 31 October 1723 the boundaries of the county were ordered to be laid out, but, because of the sparse population, the county court first met in June 1732. Brunswick County was enlarged by the addition of parts of Surry and Isle of Wight Counties in 1733. The county seat is Lawrenceville.
  • The separate office of coroner appeared in Virginia about 1660. The judicial duty of the office is to hold inquisitions in cases when persons meet sudden, violent, unnatural or suspicious death, or death without medical attendance. The coroner would summon a jury to assist him in determining cause of death. Prior to November 1877, the jurors numbered twelve. Between November 1877 and March 1926, the jurors numbered six. The jury viewed the body of the deceased and heard the testimony of witnesses. The coroner was required to write down witness testimony. After seeing and hearing the evidence, the jury delivered in writing to the coroner their conclusion concerning cause of death referred to as the inquisition. After March 1926, only the coroner determined cause of death. He could require physicians to assist him with determing cause of death. If a criminal act was determined to be the cause of death, the coroner was to deliver the guilty person to the sheriff and the coroners' inquests would be used as evidence in the criminal trial.
Cataloging source
Vi
Location of other archival material
Brunswick County criminal suits are filed with Brunswick County Judgments, 1782-1947, located at the Library of Virginia.
Label
Brunswick County (Va) Coroners' Inquisitions
Note
These items came to the Library of Virginia in a transfer of court records from Brunswick County
Arrangement
Chronological by date coroner filed inquisition in the court.
http://library.link/vocab/branchCode
  • The Library of Virginia
Cumulative index finding aids
A list of selected coroners' inquisitions of interest
Extent
1.00
Governing access note
There are no restrictions
Immediate source of acquisition
Brunswick County Circuit Court
http://library.link/vocab/recordID
001649234
Terms governing use
There are no restrictions.
Type of unit
cu. ft. (3 boxes)

Library Locations

    • Library of VirginiaBorrow it
      800 East Broad Street, Richmond, VA, 23219, US
      37.5415632 -77.4360805
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