About the S. Bassett French Biographical Sketches
This database is a fully-searchable index to the handwritten biographical sketches compiled by S. Bassett French between 1890 and 1897. This collection is housed in the Archives of the Library of Virginia.
Samuel Bassett French (1820-1898), attorney, judge, Confederate officer, and editor, was a Norfolk native and later resident of Chesterfield County and Richmond. Between 1890 and 1897, and in preparation for an intended biographical dictionary to be titled Annals of Prominent Virginians of the XIX Century, French compiled biographical information in almost 9,000 men, often obtaining information directly from the subject or from members of the immediate family. This collection consists of digital images of more than 14,000 items from French's handwritten notes