The Resource Rockbridge County (Va.) Judgments (Freedom Suits)

Rockbridge County (Va.) Judgments (Freedom Suits)

Label
Rockbridge County (Va.) Judgments (Freedom Suits), 1809-1854
Title
Rockbridge County (Va.) Judgments (Freedom Suits)
Inclusive dates
1809-1854
Creator
Contributor
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
  • Rockbridge County (Va.) Judgments (Freedom Suits), 1809-1854, consist of suits initiated by slaves seeking to gain their freedom on the law side of the court. 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. Also identified are names of slaves and slaveowners found in suit as well as whether slave(s) won their freedom. Predominant documents found in Judgments (Freedom Suits) include petitions, records of suits, depositions, affidavits, wills, among other items. Information found in documents include slave's argument for freedom, acquisition of slaves by slaveowners, slave ancestry, and relationship between slaves and slaveowners
  • Judgments (Freedom Suits) are useful when researching local history and genealogical information, particularly for African Americans. They are a valuable source of local, state, social, and legal history and serve as a primary source for understanding a locality’s history
Note
Agency history record describes the history and functions of the Virginia Circuit Court (Rockbridge County). Browse search: Rockbridge County (Va.) Circuit Court.
Member of
Action
Described
Biographical or historical data
  • Slaves sued for emancipation in freedom suits based on the following: they were descendant(s) of a free female ancestor, typically a Native American (Hening Statutes, volume 2, p.170); failure of slaveowner(s) to abide by the 1778 slave nonimportation act (Henings Statutes, volume 9, pp. 471-472); or claimed to have been freed by slaveowner(s) by deed of emancipation or last will and testament (Henings Statutes volume 11, pp. 39-40)
  • Rockbridge County was named for Natural Bridge, an exceptional rock formation located in the county. The county was formed from Augusta and Botetourt Counties in 1778, and another part of Botetourt was added in 1888. The county seat is the city of Lexington.
Cataloging source
Vi
Location of other archival material
  • Additional Rockbridge County Court Records can be found on microfilm at The Library of Virginia web site. Consult "A Guide to Virginia County and City Records on Microfilm."
  • Additional Rockbridge County Judgments are found at the Library of Virginia.
Label
Rockbridge County (Va.) Judgments (Freedom Suits)
http://library.link/vocab/branchCode
  • The Library of Virginia
Cumulative index finding aids
List of freedom suits
Extent
.35
Governing access note
There are no restrictions
Immediate source of acquisition
Rockbridge County (Va.) Circuit Court
Organization method
Arranged chronologically.
http://library.link/vocab/recordID
001672060
Terms governing use
There are no restrictions.
Type of unit
cu. ft. (1 box)

Library Locations

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