Henry County, Virginia Genealogy

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Henry County, Virginia genealogy and family history research page. Guide to Henry County (established 1776) genealogy, history, and courthouse sources including birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, wills, deeds and land records, Civil War records, Revolutionary War records, family histories, cemeteries, churches, tax records, newspapers, and obituaries.

Hand and keyboard.jpg Virginia
Online Records

Henry County, Virginia
Boundary map of Henry County, Virginia
Map of Virginia highlighting Henry County
Location in the state of Virginia
Map of the U.S. highlighting Virginia
Location of Virginia in the U.S.
Founded 1776
County Seat Martinsville

County Courthouse

Henry County Courthouse Square

Henry County Courthouse
Suite B
3160 Kings Mountain Rd.
Martinsville, VA 24112-3966
Phone: 276-634-4880

Clerk Circuit Court has marriage and land records from
1777 divorce records from 1909 and probate records[1]Template:RAOGKcourthouse

Beginning Dates for Henry County, Virginia Genealogy Government Records
Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate
1853 1778 1853 1820 1776 1777


Governor Patrick Henry (1736-1799)

The county was named after Virginia Governor Patrick Henry (1736-1799).

Parent County

1776--Henry County was created 7 October 1776 from Pittsylvania County.
County seat: Martinsville [2]

Boundary Changes

Record Loss

  • Lost censuses: 1790, 1800, 1810, 1890


Populated Places

Neighboring Counties


African American

The John B. Harris Collection (African American) at Bassett Historical Center (see Societies and Libraries) includes the following resources:

  • "African-American Census Records, 1870-1910, Henry County, Virginia"
  • "Afro-American Marriages of Henry County, Virginia"
  • "Henry County Cohabitation List"
  • Extensive list of obituaries 1950s-1995[3]

Other Henry County African American resources include:

Bible Records

Images of the Virginia Historical Society's family Bible collection have been digitized:

Additional Bible records include:



For tips on accessing Henry County, Virginia Genealogy census records online, see: Virginia Census.

Historical populations
Census Pop.

For tips on accessing census records online, see Virginia Census.

1790 - Lost, but a subsitute is available, see Taxation.

1800 - Lost, but a subsitute is available, see Taxation.

1810 - Lost, but a subsitute is available, see Taxation.


  • Simmons, Don. Henry County, Virginia Census of 1830. 1976. Digital version at World Vital Records ($).


  • Douthat, James L. 1840 Mountain Empire of Virginia Census. Signal Mountain, Tenn.: Mountain Press, 2001. FHL Collection 975.5 X2d 1840. Free online surname index and purchase details at Mountain Press website. [Includes Henry County.]

1890 Union Veterans

Church Records


Early Baptist churches (with years constituted):

  1. Beaver Creek aka Bever Creek (1786).[4] A history was published in 1933: FHL Book 975.5692 K2t; digital version at Ancestry ($).[5] Contains church minutes 1786-1800, family records 1771-1858 (births, marriages and deaths for the Anthony, Brittin and Strother families and their slaves), and accounts 1810-1815.
  2. Leatherwood (1772)[4]

The 10,000 name petition (dated 16 October 1776) has been digitized at the Library of Congress website. It was signed by people from all over Virginia who wanted an end to persecution of Baptists by the Established Church. Baptists and Baptist sympathizers alike signed the petition. To find your ancestor in this record, first check Hall's transcription in the Magazine of Virginia Genealogy (Vols. 35-38, with annotations in Vol. 39), which is available online at Ancestry ($). It is also available in book form at the Family History Library: FHL Book 975.5 B2vs v. 35-39. Then proceed to the Library of Congress website to see the original images.

Henry County fell within the bounds of the Strawberry Association.

Church of England

Gotoarrow.png See also Camden Parish
Gotoarrow.png See also Patrick Parish


Chancery Court

  • Indexes (1783-1946) and images (1783-1931) to Henry County, Virginia Chancery Records 1755-1912 are available online through Virginia Memory: Chancery Records Index. These records, often concerned with inheritance disputes, contain a wealth of genealogical information.


More than 100 genealogies have been published about Henry County families. To view a list, visit Henry County, Virginia Genealogy.

Land and Property

Local Histories

  • Hill, Judith Parks America. A History of Henry County, Virginia: With Biographical Sketches of Its Most Prominent Citizens and Genealogical Histories of Half a Hundred of Its Oldest Families. 1925. FHL [2 copies]; digital version at Ancestry ($); and World Vital Records ($). Index at EveryNameIndex.com - free.
  • Pedigo, Virginia G. History of Patrick and Henry Counties, Virginia. Roanoke, Va.: Stone Printing and Manufacturing Co., 1933. Original edition and 1977 reprint available at FHL; digital version at Ancestry ($); and World Vital Records ($).



  • Clay, Robert Y. "Some Delinquent Taxpayers 1787-1790," The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 20, No. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1976):199-208. Available at FHL; digital version at New England Ancestors ($). [These records identify migrants who left the county and often their intended destinations. Henry County's 1786 and 1790 Delinquent Lists appear on pp. 128-129.]
  • Elliott, Katherine B. Emigration to Other States from Southside Virginia. 2 vols. South Hill, Virginia: K.B. Elliott, 1966. Vol. 1 of original edition available at FHL; 1983 reprints (both volumes) available at FHL; 1990-1992 reprints (both volumes) also available at FHL. [Includes individuals who migrated out of Henry County to other parts of the country.]


French and Indian War
  • Bockstruck, Lloyd DeWitt. Virginia's Colonial Soldiers. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1988. Available at FHL. [Identifies some Henry County veterans; see place name index.]
Revolutionary War

The following unit rosters of Henry County residents in the Revolutionary War are available for free online, courtesy: Southern Campaigns of the American Revolution:

  1. "Payrolls of the Militia Company of Capt. Daniel Carlin, Henry County, Virginia, in 1779 and 1781," transcribed and annotated by C. Leon Harris.
  2. "Henry County, Virginia, Continental Soldiers Recruited by Act of October 1780," transcribed and annotated by C. Leon Harris.
  3. "Militia List - Capt. Jonathan Hanby" (1781), transcribed and annotated by James L. Lynch III.

Additional resources include:

Henry residents' participation in the Revolutionary War.[6]

  • A Census of Pensioners for Revolutionary or Military Services: With their Names, Ages, and Places of Residence, as Returned by the Marshalls of the Several Judicial Districts, Under the Act for Taking the Sixth Census]. 1841. Digital version at Google Books. 1967 reprint: FHL Collection 973 X2pc 1840. [See Virginia, Eastern District, Henry County on page 131.]
  • Rejected or Suspended Applications for Revolutionary War Pensions. Washington, D.C., 1852. Reprinted by Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1969, and 1991. Reprints include "an Added Index to States." FHL Book 973 M24ur; digital version at Ancestry ($). [Includes veterans from this county; Virginia section begins on page 238.]
War of 1812

Henry County men served in the 64th Regiment.[7]

  • List of Pensioners on the Roll, January 1, 1883; Giving the Name of Each Pensioner, the Cause for Why Pensioned, the Post-Office Address, the Rate of Pension Per Month, and the Date of Original Allowance... Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1883. FHL Collection 973 M2Lp v. 5; digital versions at Google Books and Internet Archive. [See Vol. 5, Virginia, Henry County, pp. 85-86. Identifies War of 1812 veterans living in this county in 1883.]
Civil War

Regiments. Service men in Henry County, Virginia Genealogy served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in Henry County, Virginia Genealogy:

- 21st Regiment, Virginia Cavalry (Confederate). Company G 2nd.[8]
- 24th Regiment, Virginia Cavalry (Confederate). Company H.[9]
- 24th Regiment, Virginia Infantry (Confederate). Company H (Henry Guards).[10]
- 42nd Regiment, Virginia Infantry (Confederate). Company A (Henry Volunteers), Company F (Leatherwood Fencibles), and Company G (Second Company of Volunteers).[11]


The Virginia Newspapers Project identifies local Henry County, Virginia Genealogy newspapers.

Indexed images of the Virginia Gazette (1736-1780) are available online through the Colonial Williamsburg website. In addition, Professor Tom Costa and The Rector and Visitors of the University of Virginia have created a database of all runaway advertisements for slaves, indentured servants, transported convicts, and ship deserters listed in this source and other Virginia newspapers (1736-1803), see: The Geography of Slavery in Virginia. These newspapers are valuable resources for all regions of Virginia.


  • Watts, Dorothy C. "Petitions of Residents of Bedford and Henry Counties, Virginia, in Favor of and Opposed to a New County (Franklin)," The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 24, No. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1980):83-89; Vol. 24, No. 3 (Jul.-Sep. 1980):192-199. Available at New England Ancestors ($).

Probate Records

A free index to Henry County, Virginia Genealogy wills and administrations (1777-1800) is available at the Library of Virginia website.

Research Guides

  • Sweeney, Alice J. "Bassett Historical Center," The Virginia Genealogical Society Newsletter, Vol. 28, No. 4 (Aug. 2002):1-3. Available at FHL; digital version at Virginia Genealogical Society website.


How can Virginia tax lists help me? 

  • [1780] Specific Taxes, 1780, Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. 1, No. 3 (Jan. 1894). Available at JSTOR ($).
  • [1782] Fothergill, Augusta B. and John Mark Naugle. Virginia Tax Payers, 1782-87, Other Than Those Published by the United States Census Bureau. 1940; reprint, Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1978. Available at FHL. [1782 personal property tax list of Henry County.]
  • [1782-1814] Heinegg, Paul. "Henry County Personal Property Tax List, 1782-1814," Free African Americans.com. [Heinegg abstracted free blacks listed in these records.]
  • [1787] Schreiner-Yantis, Netti and Florene Speakman Love. The 1787 Census of Virginia: An Accounting of the Name of Every White Male Tithable Over 21 Years, the Number of White Males Between 16 & 21 Years, the Number of Slaves over 16 & Those Under 16 Years, Together with a Listing of Their Horses, Cattle & Carriages, and Also the Names of All Persons to Whom Ordinary Licenses and Physician's Licenses Were Issued. 3 vols. Springfield, Va.: Genealogical Books in Print, 1987. Available at FHL. [The source of this publication is the 1787 personal property tax list. Henry County is included in Vol. 1.]
  • [1786, 1790] Clay, Robert Y. "Some Delinquent Taxpayers 1787-1790," The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 20, No. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1976):199-208. Available at FHL; digital version at New England Ancestors ($). [These records identify migrants who left the county and often their intended destinations. Henry County's 1786 and 1790 Delinquent List appear on pp. 128-129.]
  • [1790, 1800] Indexed images of the 1790 and 1800 Personal Property Tax Lists of Henry County, Virginia are available online, courtesy: Binns Genealogy.
  • [1800] Tax List, 1800, Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 32, No. 1 (Jan. 1988); Vol. 32, No. 2 (Apr. 1988). Available at FHL.
  • [1810] Schreiner-Yates, Netti. A Supplement to the 1810 Census of Virginia: Tax Lists of the Counties for which the Census is Missing. Springfield, Va.: Genealogical Books in Print, 1971. Available at FHL. [The source for this publication is the 1810 personal property tax list. Henry County is included because the 1810 Census for that county has been destroyed.]
  • [1810] Tax List, 1810, Southwest Virginian, Vol. 6, No. 28 (Mar. 1983).
  • [1815] Ward, Roger D. 1815 Directory of Virginia Landowners (and Gazetteer). 6 vols. Athens, Georgia: Iberian Pub. Co., 1997-2000. Available at FHL. [The source for this publication is the 1815 land tax. Henry County is included in Vol. 2.]
  • [1820] Lands Returned Delinquent, List, 1820, Magazine of Virginia Genealogy, Vol. 44, No. 1 (Feb. 2006). Available at FHL.

Vital Records

Indexes to Henry County, Virginia Genealogy births, marriages, and deaths are available online. These collections are incomplete, but are easy to search. Most records can also be ordered electronically online as well. Courtesy: FamilySearch - free. See also How to order Virginia Vital Records


Henry County, Virginia Genealogy deaths are included in the Library of Virginia's Death Index of Virginia, 1853-1896, sponsored by The Virginia Genealogical Society, available online - free.

Vital Record Substitutes

The Virginia Historical Society's Marriage and Obituary Index, 1736-1820 (newspaper abstracts) is available for free online. Images of the original index cards are browseable, arranged alphabetically by surname.

Societies and Libraries

  • Bassett Historical Center, Bassett, Virginia. Website includes descriptions of collections. Excellent resource for family history research in Henry, Patrick, Floyd, Franklin and Pittsylvania counties in Virginia, the city of Martinsville, Virginia, and Rockingham, Stokes and Surry counties in North Carolina.[3].
  • VA-NC Piedmont Genealogical Society

Family History Centers



  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Henry County, Virginia. Page 715 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  3. 3.0 3.1 Alice J. Sweeney, "Bassett Historical Center," The Virginia Genealogical Society Newsletter, Vol. 28, No. 4 (Aug. 2002):1-3, available online at: http://www.vgs.org/vgsn2804.pdf.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Robert Baylor Semple and George William Beale, A History of the Rise and Progress of the Baptists in Virginia (Pitt and Dickinson, 1894), 338-339. Digital version at Google Books.
  5. Stella Pocahontas Anthony Thompson, Copy of the History of Bever Creek Church, 1786, Henry County, Virginia (Columbia, Mo.: Mrs. J.F. Thompson, 1933). FHL Large Q Book 975.5692 K2t.
  6. J.T. McAllister, Virginia Militia in the Revolutionary War: McAllister's Data (Hot Springs, Va.: McAllister Pub. Co., 1913), 35. Digitized by Internet Archive.
  7. Stuart Lee Butler, A Guide to Virginia Militia Units in the War of 1812 (Athens, Ga.: Iberian Pub. Co., 1988), 108. FHL Book 975.5 M2bs.
  8. John E. Olson, 21st Virginia Cavalry (Lynchburg, Va.: H.E. Howard, c1989). FHL Book 975.5 M2vr v. 57.
  9. Darryl Holland, 24th Virginia Cavalry (Lynchburg, Va.: H.E. Howard, 1997). FHL Book 975.5 M2vr v. 128.
  10. Ralph White Gunn, 24th Virginia Infantry (Lynchburg, Va.: H.E. Howard, 1987). FHL Book 975.5 M2vr v. 34.
  11. John Chapla, 42nd Virginia Infantry (Lynchburg, Va.: H.E. Howard, 1983). FHL Book 975.5 M2vr v. 5.