Family Bible Records


Historically, Virginia family Bible records have been an important source for vital statistics. These records contain birth, death, and marriage dates and sometimes other personal and family information. Centralized recording of vital statistics did not begin in Virginia until 1853. Even after 1853, this information was not always reported or forwarded to the Bureau of Vital Statistics, and during the period 1896-1912 the reporting of births and deaths was not required.

Over the years, The Library of Virginia has acquired originals and photocopies of over 6,800 family Bible records. These materials have been cataloged and are searchable as part of the Archives and Manuscripts Catalog. In late 1995, The Library of Virginia began a project to scan the pages that constitute the Bible record collection. The images can be viewed by locating a catalog record that describes the desired Bible record and then clicking on the multi-media icon to display the Bible record images. If the Bible record consists of more than one image, click on each page number listed to display the images one at a time.

Poor quality originals may result in illegible images.

Part of the Bible records collection consists of bound volumes of individual family Bible records known as the Miscellaneous Bible Records Collection. In the database there are catalog records for each individual Bible record.

Images for the Miscellaneous Bible Records Collection are now available.

Bible records held by the Library are also described in A Guide to Bible Records in the Library of Virginia, 2 vols. (Richmond, Va., 1999). Bible records received subsequently are described in the published annual reports of archival accessions.

How to Have Your Family Bible Records Placed in the Archives and Manuscripts Collection

Family Bible records represent an extremely valuable source of information for the researcher. As a result, The Library of Virginia actively seeks copies of privately held Bible records related to Virginia residents.

If you can bring your original Bible to the Archives, we will make arrangements to copy the family information for the collection at no charge.

If you cannot visit the Archives, please make good quality photocopies of the title page of the Bible showing the date of publication, and any pages which record dates of birth, death, marriage or other important family information. Send the copies you make along with information about the Virginia counties of residence of the families shown in the record to:

The Library of Virginia
Private Papers Collection
800 East Broad Street
Richmond, Virginia 23219-8000

Potential donors may contact:

Accessioning Archivist
Library of Virginia
800 East Broad Street
Richmond, Virginia 23219-8000

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