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The Library of Virginia is pleased to announce that the first digital images from the Rockingham County Chancery Causes are now available on the Chancery Records Index. This initial addition covers the time period from 1781 to 1893.

Following are a few suits of interest found in this first group of digital images. Rockingham County Chancery Cause 1850-002 offers a reflection on the sectional division over slavery within the national Methodist Episcopal Church on the local church level. The suit includes numerous depositions given by pastors and members that present a vivid description of the bitter division within the congregation. Rockingham County Chancery Causes 1874-051 and 1884-126 are estate disputes that have their origins in the Civil War. In the first suit, former slaves sued for their share of their former master’s estate left to them in his will. The latter suit includes exhibits detailing the destruction done to the estate of Edward H. Smith by Federal troops. A divorce suit, 1885-206, contains letters from the husband’s paramour along with a photograph of her wearing a ring belonging to his estranged wife.

Check back as more Rockingham County chancery images will be added in the future.

-Greg Crawford, Local Records Coordinator

Greg Crawford

State Archivist & Director of Government Records Services


  • Pat Ritchie says:

    Hooray! We’ve been looking forward to this for a long time.

  • Madaline Preston says:

    Nice to see the chancery records. Thank you. Rockingham Co. 1872-070 – first page is the file folder; 2nd page starts in the middle of a letter. Do you suppose there is an omission….or a lost page in the data?
    Would appreciate your help.

    • Bari says:

      Thanks for reading the blog! In regards to Rockingham Co. 1872-070, the images did get slightly out of order before scanning. The 2nd image is the middle of the bill. You can find the start of the bill at image #9. The handwriting looks vastly different on those two documents, but we checked the originals and those images are part of the same bill. Sorry for the confusion!

  • Madaline Preston says:

    Re:: 1872-070 for Rockingham Co. …I should have provided the Plaintiffs were Abbot Iron Co. and Reuben Raines. I entered the site with a query for Raines.

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