Virginia Genealogical Society
Purpose of the Society
The Virginia Genealogical Society was organized in 1960. Its mission is to:
- promote and foster family history education and research
- publish genealogical information
- and share accumulated knowledge.
Help the Society Can Provide
- Because of its close proximity to the Library of Virginia and the Virginia Historical Society, the Society does not maintain record collections, a research facility, library, or surname material. (the websites below are temporarily down 10/13/2016)
- Virtual VIGR (Virginia Institute for Genealogical Research) collects articles of interest to Virginia genealogical research for the use of individual and family members of the Society. Access to Virtual VIGR is not available to institutions or individuals who are not active members of the Society.
- Virginia Research Aids. This section includes:
- Featured website. This section is updated periodically with websites that aid the Virginia researcher in some way. These, for the most part, are Virginia specific sites. They may encompass the entire state or a local site.
- Miscellaneous. This section includes articles that may not be Virginia specific but are, nonetheless, of value to the Virginia researcher. Additionally, it contains the Newsletter queries. The Society also maintains and periodically updates in this section a list of Virginia-based researchers in Word and PDF format.
Publications for Sale
The Virginia Genealogical Society publications program includes three major series:
- Cavaliers and Pioneers: Abstracts of Virginia Land Patents: 1732-1776 (vols. 4-8). Land patent records are an invaluable genealogical and historical resource for researchers of early Virginia. The Virginia Genealogical Society has issued five volumes taking the three volumes of Nell Marion Nugent's abstracts of Virginia land patents to 1776.
- Index to Virginia Estates: 1800-1865 (10 vols). Index of all Virginia estate-related records found in will books and other collections, typically on microfilm. This ten-volume set has been completed geographically. Funding for this series has been made possible in part by a grant from the Richard Slatten Endowment for Virginia History of The Community Foundation in memory of Richard Slatten, a former President of the Virginia Genealogical Society.
- The Magazine of Virginia Genealogy vols. 1-40 are available on CD; vols. 34-45 are available for purchase as printed back issues.
To learn more about and purchase publications, visit the Store on our website.
Benefits to Those Who Join the Society
Members of the Virginia Genealogical Society enjoy:
- The Magazine of Virginia Genealogy. Published quarterly; covers primarily Virginia records. Copies of back issues are available.
- The Virginia Genealogical Society Newsletter. Published bi-monthly; winner of the 1996 and 1997 National Genealogical Society Newsletter Competition. Contains feature articles, queries, book reviews, column "Glad You Asked That...," and announcements. Copies of back issues are available.
- Access to the Members-Only section of the VGS website, with premium articles and information of interest to the Virginia researcher.
- The names of Friends, Patrons, Benefactors, and Life Members are published in the Newsletter.
- Discounted registration fees for conferences.
- Twenty percent discount on Society publications.
To learn more, visit the Membership page on our website.
The Society holds two conferences each year: one in the spring in Richmond, Virginia; and one in the fall at various locations around the state.
The 2012 Fall Conference, entitled "Lynchburg and Appomattox: Moving Towards The End of the Long Conflict," will be held on October 12-13, 2012 at the Jones Memorial Library, Lynchburg, Virginia (Friday) and the Kirkley Hotel & Conference Center, 2900 Chandlers Mountain Road, Lynchburg, Virginia (Saturday). You can register for the conference on our website here. Be sure you are logged in with your member account prior to ordering online to receive the member's discount. VGS and BGSI (Bedford Genealogical Society, Inc.) members pay $36 through September 29th. Non-members pay $45 through September 29th. After September 29th, prices go up by $10 for everyone, so register early! Online registration will end after October 8th to allow time to organize event details. You can register by phone or as a walk-in after October 8th, but we cannot guarantee that a meal will be available. No refunds will be made after October 1st.
The Board of Governors meets at the Society's administrative offices in Richmond, Virginia, on the first Sunday of the last month of each quarter. Please visit the Contacts page on the website for a list of officers.
Death Index of Virginia
Death Index of Virginia (DIVA). Recently, the goal of this ongoing project was redirected to create a state-wide index of death records (c. 1853-1896) and not a database of death record entries. Volunteers are needed to make such indices from microfilm copies provided by the Library of Virginia. Please contact VGS member Emily Rusk for details.