Smyth County, Virginia Genealogy

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Smyth County, Virginia
Boundary map of Smyth County, Virginia
Map of Virginia highlighting Smyth County
Location in the state of Virginia
Map of the U.S. highlighting Virginia
Location of Virginia in the U.S.
Founded 1832
County Seat Marion
United States  go to  Virginia  go to  Smyth County 
Southwest Virginia county.

County Courthouse

Smyth County Courthouse, Marion, Va.

Smyth County Courthouse
109 West Main Street, Room 144
Marion, VA 24354
Phone: 540-783-7186

Clerk Circuit Court has marriage, divorce,
probate, court and land records from 1832[1]

Beginning Dates for Smyth County, Virginia Genealogy Government Records
Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate
1853 1832 1853 1840 1832 1832


Parent County

1832--Smyth County was created 23 February 1832 from Washington and Wythe Counties.
County seat: Marion [2]

Boundary Changes

Record Loss

  • Lost census: 1890


Populated Places

Neighboring Counties


Research Guides

  • "A Guide to the Counties of Virginia: Smyth County," The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 22, No. 3 (Jul.-Sep. 1978):213-215. Available at American Ancestors ($).

African American

Smyth County, Virginia Genealogy cohabitation records are available online.

Freedmen's Bureau Letters or Correspondence, 1865-1872

Bible Records

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

Additional Bible records include:



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


  • 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 Smyth County.]

1890 Union Veterans

Historical populations
Census Pop.



Early Baptist churches (with years constituted):

  • St. Clair's Bottom (1791), Cilhowie, Va. Membership lists (beginning in 1791) and a history were published in the Appalachian Quarterly, Vol. 10, No. 4 (Dec. 2005). Originally fell within the bounds of Washington County, Virginia.



More than 25 genealogies have been published about Smyth County families. To view a list, visit Smyth County, Virginia Genealogy.


Local Histories

  • Boyd, Charles Rufus. Resources of South-west Virginia: Showing the Mineral Deposits of Iron, Coal, Zinc, Copper and Lead, also the Staples of the Various Counties, Methods of Transportation Access, Etc. New York: J. Wiley, 1881. FHL Collection [Includes Smyth County.]
  • Presgraves, James S. Smyth County Families and History. Wytheville, Va.: J. Presgraves, 1974. FHL Collection
  • Sheffey, John P. General Resources and Advantages of Smyth County: In the Most Attractive Section of Appalachian Virginia. n.p.: n.p., 1907. FHL Collection; digital version at Ancestry ($).
  • Wilson, Goodridge. Smyth County, History and Traditions. Kingsport, Tenn.: Kingsport Press, 1932. FHL Collection 547258 Item 2; FHL Collection 975.5723 H2w 1976 reprint; Sturgill, Kenneth Lee. A Complete Researchers Index to "Smyth County History and Traditions." Marion, VA: K. L. Sturgill, 1986. Index: FHL Collection 975.5723 H2w index and FHL Collection 6103880; digital version at Ancestry ($); World Vital Records ($).



Revolutionary War
  • Kegley, Mary B. Revolutionary War Pension Applications of Southwest Virginia Soldiers. n.p.: M.B. Kegley, 1997. FHL Collection [Includes Smyth County pensioners.]
  • 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 versions at U.S. Census Bureau and Google Books et. al. 1967 reprint: FHL Collection 973 X2pc 1840. [See Virginia, Western District, Smyth County on page 136.]
  • 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 Collection 973 M24ur; digital version at Ancestry ($). [Includes veterans from this county; Virginia section begins on page 238.]
War of 1812
  • 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, Smyth County, p. 104. Identifies War of 1812 veterans living in this county in 1883.]
Civil War

Regiments. Service men in Smyth 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 Smyth County, Virginia Genealogy: [3] [4]

- 4th Regiment, Virginia Infantry (Confederate). Company D (Smyth Blues).[5]
- 8th Regiment, Virginia Cavalry (Confederate). Company A (Smyth Dragoons)[6]
- 13th Battalion, Virginia Reserves (Confederate). Companies A and D.[7]
- 21st Regiment, Virginia Cavalry (Confederate)
- 23rd Battalion, Virginia Infantry Reserves (Confederate). Company A (The Smyth County Sharpshooters), Company E, and Company F.[8]
- 45th Regiment, Virginia Infantry (Confederate)
- 48th Regiment, Virginia Infantry (Confederate). Company A (Smyth Rifle Greys).[9]
- 50th Regiment, Virginia Infantry (Confederate)
- Marion Home Guard from Smyth County composed of about fifty men between the ages of 45-72 was organized in April 1861 according to information found on page 209 of the preceding reference.

Records and histories are available, including:


Virginia Naturalization Petitions, 1906-1929



  • Cutten, George Barton. The Silversmiths of Virginia (together with Watchmakers and Jewelers) from 1694 to 1850. Richmond, Va.: The Dietz Press, Incorporated, 1952. FHL. [Includes a section on Marion watchmakers.]



How can Virginia tax lists help me?

  • [1832-1850] Land Tax Books of Smyth County, Virginia, 1832-1850. Original records, Smyth County Courthouse, Marion, Va., microfilmed reproduction available at FHL.
  • [1832-1850] Personal Property Tax Lists of Smyth County, Virginia, 1832-1850. Original records, Library of Virginia, Richmond, Va., microfilmed reproduction available at FHL.
  • [1832] Personal Property Tax List, 1832, Virginia Appalachian Notes. Roanoke VA: Nov 1985. Vol. 9 Iss. 4.

Vital Records

Indexes to Smyth 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


Beth Fridley has published abstracts of the following Smyth County birth records online at Ancestry:

  • Smyth County, Virginia Births, 1875-78 [database on-line]. Digital version at Ancestry ($).
  • Smyth County, Virginia Births, 1879-84 [database on-line]. Digital version at Ancestry ($).
  • Smyth County, Virginia Births, 1885-96 [database on-line]. Digital version at Ancestry ($).

The original records covering 1853-1896 and an index covering 1853-1917 are available on microfilm at the Family History Library.

  • Smyth County, Virginia Death Registers 1853-1896 and Index 1853-1917. Original records, Smyth County Courthouse, Marion, Va., microfilmed reproduction at FHL.
Vital Record Substitutes

Gotoarrow.png See also Bible Records and Church Records

Societies and Libraries

Smyth County Genealogical Society:

Smyth-Bland Regional Library:

Family History Centers

Web Sites


  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Smyth County, Virginia. Page 721 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. FHL book 975.5723 H2w Smyth County History and Traditions, pages 237-239.
  4. FHL book 975.5 M2vr v. 29 titled A Guide to Virginia Military Organizations 1861-1865
  5. James I. Robertson, 4th Virginia Infantry (Lynchburg, Va.: H.F. Howard, 1982). FHL Book 975.5 M2vr v. 1.
  6. Jack L. Dickinson, 8th Virginia Cavalry (Lynchburg, Va.: H.E. Howard, 1986). FHL Book 975.5 M2vr v. 25.
  7. William C. Pendleton, History of Tazewell County and Southwest Virginia, 1748-1920 (Richmond, Va.: W.C. Hill Printing Company, 1920), 629-630. Digital version at Google Books.
  8. J.L. Scott, 23rd Battalion Virginia Infantry (Lynchburg, Va.: H.E. Howard, c1991). FHL Book 975.5 M2vr v. 79.
  9. John D. Chapla, 48th Virginia Infantry (Lynchburg, Va.: H.E. Howard, 1989). FHL Book 975.5 M2vr v. 54.