The Resource Charles City County (Va.) Deeds, Wills, etc.

Charles City County (Va.) Deeds, Wills, etc.

Charles City County (Va.) Deeds, Wills, etc., 1724/1725-1731
Charles City County (Va.) Deeds, Wills, etc.
Inclusive dates
  • Charles City County (Va.) Deeds, Wills, etc., 1724/1725-1731, contains numerous 18th century legal documents related primarly to estates and land but including additional record types often recorded in county court order or minute books such as officials' appointments, judgments issued by county sheriffs, powers of attorney, indentured servants, fiduciary records and road and bridge records. Types of deeds found include deeds of bargain and sale, deeds of release, deeds of gift and deeds of lease and release
  • Deeds of bargain and sale are the most commonly recorded deed in which one individual sells property, usually land, but occasionally personal property, to another individual. Such deeds show the name of the grantor and grantee, the residence of both parties, a description of what is being sold, the consideration (or price), the location of the tract or land, the tract's boundaries, and any limitations on the property being sold. A deed of release is made when a individual having legal claim to property sold or devised by another party relinquishes his or her claim of ownership to the property
  • A deed of gift is a deed of property that the grantee does not have to purchase. Older persons sometimes made deeds of gifts to their children and grandchildren instead of making a will. The older person usually retained the right to use the property for the rest of their life or specified that the grantee would use the property for the grantor's benefit during the grantor's life time. Deeds of lease and release consisted of two parts and were used in the early 1800s. The first part stated what property was to be sold and the second part restated the information about the property and conveyed ownership
  • The wills included in the volume record the deceased's plan for how his or her estate was to be divided among his or her heirs following his or her death. Information commonly found in wills include the name of the deceased, also referred to as the testator; names of heirs; a list of real and personal property (including slaves) and how it was to be divided among the heirs; names of individuals who were to be the will's executors; the date the will was written and the date that the will was recorded at the court house. Nuncupative wills are oral wills
  • The volume also contains an officials' appointments related to the county clerk and deputy clerk taking office. Writs and executions were issued by county sheriffs to individuals concerning debts between individuals. A power of attorney is a person appointed by someone else to act in his or her behalf in a legal matter. Powers of attorney were issued to sell land, collect inheritances, collect debts, etc., when the person was unable to visit the court to transact the business himself or herself. Indentured servants were bound "by covenants and promises to a said individual that from the date hereof until first arrival in Virginia or Maryland and after for 7 years, to serve in such service and employment in which said individual shall employ him or her, in return for which, said individual will pay his or her passage and will allow meat, drink, lodging and apparel during said term; and at the end of term will pay the usual allowance."
  • An estate appraisal listed the personal property and assigned a monetary value to each item. Accounts current are the statements of monies received and paid out by the executor in settling an estate. Estate accounts, inventories and schedules of property number among the fiduciary records recorded in the volume. Repairs to bridges are part of the road and bridge series. As indicated, pages 1-7 and 10-11 are missing. This volume as well as the loose negative photostatic copies contain a typed index compiled in July 1975. The index is arranged alphabetically by the individual's surname. Variations on the spellings of these last names are noted. The volume is valuable not only because it survives from a burned county but it also references families from other burned counties including Henrico, Isle of Wight, James City County, King and Queen, King William, New Kent, Prince George, Surry and York
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Biographical or historical data
  • Charles City County was named for Charles I of England and was one of the eight shires established in 1634.
  • Records have been destroyed at various times. The most damage occurred during the Civil War when the records were strewn through the woods in a rainstorm. A few preā€“Civil War volumes such as deed books, will books, minute books, and order books exist.
  • A deed was signed by the grantor, and possibly his wife or anyone else having a claim to the property, and by at least two witnesses. On presentation to the court, deeds were proved and recorded. If the deed was not witnessed, the grantor acknowledged the deed in open court. Individuals dying with a written will died testate. After the death of an individual, his or her will was brought into court, where two of the subscribing witnesses swore that the document was genuine. After the will was proved, the executor or executrix was bonded to carry out his or her duties to settle the estate. The court then ordered the will to be recorded. County sheriffs served a vital law enforcement role during this time and rendered services in the prosecution of court cases--frequently related to debts between individuals (known as judgments.)
  • The original deeds, wills and other records, from which this volume was compiled, were created by the County Court.
Cataloging source
Location of other archival material
  • Additional Charles City County Land Records and Wills 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's web site.
  • Consult "Charles City County, Wills and Deeds, 1725-1731 by Benjamin Weisiger III, 1984," in the Library of Virginia's collection for abstracts of each document contained in the volume.
  • Charles City County is one of Virginia's Lost Records Localities. Additional Charles City County Court Records may be found in the Virginia Lost Records Localities Digital Collection.
Charles City County (Va.) Deeds, Wills, etc.
  • This xerox copy, of the original volume found in the county courthouse, was prepared and created by the Jamestown Foundation and paid for by the "Order of the First Families of Virginia."
  • Loose negative photostats were also created during this time by the Virginia State Library (now the Library of Virginia) and remain unbound
Arranged chronologically.
  • The Library of Virginia
  • 2
  • 1 box.
Governing access note
There are no restrictions
Immediate source of acquisition
  • Jamestown Foundation
  • Virginia State Library
Reproduction note
photostats (negative)
Terms governing use
There are no restrictions.
Type of unit
v. (355 p.) and



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Library Locations

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