Botetourt County, Virginia Genealogy
Botetourt County, Virginia genealogy and family history research page. Guide to Botetourt County (established 1769) 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.
|Botetourt County, Virginia|
Location in the state of Virginia
Location of Virginia in the U.S.
- 1 County Courthouse
- 2 History
- 3 Places/Localities
- 4 Resources
- 4.1 Research Guides
- 4.2 African American
- 4.3 Cemeteries
- 4.4 Census
- 4.5 Church History and Records
- 4.6 Court Records
- 4.7 Genealogy
- 4.8 Immigration
- 4.9 Land and Property
- 4.10 Local Histories
- 4.11 Maps
- 4.12 Military
- 4.13 Naturalization
- 4.14 Newspapers
- 4.15 Occupations
- 4.16 Periodicals
- 4.17 Probate Records
- 4.18 Taxation
- 4.19 Vital Records
- 5 Societies and Libraries
- 6 Websites
- 8 References
Botetourt County Courthouse
Fincastle, Virginia 24090
Clerk Circuit Court has birth and death records 1853-1870,
marriage, divorce, probate, land, court and cemetery records from 1770
The county was named after Norborne Berkeley, 4th Baron de Botetourt (c1717-1770). Berkeley, formerly a Member of British Parliament, served as Virginia's Royal Governor at the time of Botetourt County's organization.
- Lost censuses: 1790, 1800, 1890
- "A Guide to the Counties of Virginia: Botetourt County," The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 5, No. 3 (Jul.-Sep. 1961):131-134. Digital version at American Ancestors ($).
- Boyd-Rush, Dorothy A. Free Negroes Registered in the Clerk's Office, Botetourt County, Virginia, 1802-1836. Athens, Georgia: Iberian Pub. Co., 1993. FHL Collection
- Heinegg, Paul. "Botetourt County Personal Property Tax List 1783-1822," Free African Americans.com, available online. [Heinegg abstracted free blacks listed in these records.]
Images of the Virginia Historical Society's family Bible collection have been digitized:
- Virginia Historical Society Papers, 1607-2007 - browse collection at FamilySearch; free.
Additional Bible records include:
For a more detailed list, including addresses and external links, see Botetourt County, Virginia Cemeteries.
The following is a list of cemeteries in Botetourt County: 
- Tombstone Transcription Project Botetourt County - Many cemetery transcriptions - USGenWeb
|Source: "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau.|
- Burton, Charles T. Botetourt County, Va., 1785 Enumeration. Troutville, Va.: Burton?, 1972. FHL Collection ▲ digital version Ancestry ($).
Lost, only statistics survive.
Lost, only statistics survive.
- 1810 Census of Botetourt County, Virginia. Beverly, W. Va.: Crickard, 1968?. Available at FHL Collection; ▲ digital version Ancestry ($).
1890 Union Veterans
- Turner, Ronald Ray. Virginia's Union Veterans: Eleventh Census of the United States 1890. Available online, courtesy: Prince William County Virginia website. [Includes residents of this county.]
Church History and Records
Early Baptist churches (with years constituted):
- Mill Creek (1804). A bicentennial history was published in 2004: Touch of History, Vol. 9, No. 3 (Dec. 2004). Another history was published in 1987: Appalachian Heritage, Vol. 15, No. 4 (Fall 1987).
- Rock Spring (1804)
The 10,000 name petition (dated 16 October 1776) has been digitized at the Library of Congress website. It was signed by people from all over Virginia who wanted an end to persecution of Baptists by the Established Church. Baptists and Baptist sympathizers alike signed the petition. To find your ancestor in this record, first check Hall's transcription in the Magazine of Virginia Genealogy (Vols. 35-38, with annotations in Vol. 39), which is available online at Ancestry ($). 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.
Botetourt County fell within the bounds of the Strawberry Association.
Church of England
See also Botetourt Parish
Several of the original order books (which begin in 1770) do not contain handwritten prosecutors' indexes. Some of the entries were abstracted in Annals of Southwest Virginia, which serves as a partial index, see:
- Summers, Lewis Preston et al. Annals of Southwest Virginia, 1769-1800. 2 vols. Abingdon, Va.: L.P. Summers, 1929. Reprint: FHL Book 975.5 H2sL 1992
More than 30 genealogies have been published about Botetourt County families. To view a list, visit Botetourt County, Virginia Genealogy.
- List of imported servants and transported convicts from Europe who served labor terms in Colonial Botetourt County, Virginia Genealogy (work in progress), courtesy: Immigrant Servants Database.
During the War of 1812, American officials reported finding a total of 5 British aliens, many of whom had families, living in Fincastle and Bottetout County [sic].
Land and Property
An early settlers map is available for Botetourt County. The cartographer plots the locations of pioneers from 1770-1820. The Family History Library has a copy: FHL Map 975.583 E7h.
Grants and Patents
Land patents (pre-1779), land grants (after 1779) and surveys are available online at the Library of Virginia website. For step-by-step instructions on retrieving these records, read the Virginia Land and Property article.
- Hudgins. 362 Botetourt County, Virginia Patents 1740-1803 (Partially Placed on a Map). DeedMapper, 2004. [Names of those who received land patents, dates, land descriptions, and references may be viewed free of charge (click "Index" next to the county listing); however, in order to view the maps, it is necessary to purchase Direct Line Software's DeedMapper product.]
- Nugent, Nell M. Commonwealth's (Land) Grants or Patents, Botetourt County, Va., 1770-1802. n.d. Available at FHL.
- Sims, Edgar Barr. Sims Index to Land Grants in West Virginia. [Springfield, Virginia]: Genealogical Books in Print, c1992. Available at FHL. [Includes Botetourt County, Virginia.]
- Creekmore, Pollyanna. "Botetourt County, Virginia, First Surveys," The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 8, No. 1 (Jan.-Mar. 1964):3-13. Available at American Ancestors ($).
- Burton, Charles T. Botetourt County, Virginia, Early Settlers: From the Earliest Times through 1795, in the Area that was Botetourt County in 1782, Covers Parts of Present-day Counties of Montgomery, Bath, Giles, Floyd, Alleghany, Roanoke, Craig and Monroe. Troutville, Virginia: 1979?. Available at FHL.
- Prillaman, Helen R. Places Near the Mountains: From the Community of Amsterdam, Virginia Up the Road to Catawba, on the Waters of the Catawba and Tinker Creeks, along the Carolina Road as it Aproached Big Lick and Other Areas, Primarily North Roanoke [Botetourt and Roanoke Counties, Virginia]. Baltimore, MD, USA: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2002. Available at FHL; digital version at Ancestry ($). Alternative title: Places Near the Mountains [Botetourt and Roanoke Counties, Virginia].
- Hildebrand, John R., F.B. Kegley, and Roanoke Valley Historical Society. Historical Map of the Roanoke Historical Society Showing Botetourt County, Virginia, 1770-1820. 1965. Available at FHL. [Includes historical notes and list of prominent men.]
French and Indian War
- Bockstruck, Lloyd DeWitt. Virginia's Colonial Soldiers. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1988. Available at FHL. [Identifies some Botetourt County militia officers, soldier enlistments, and veterans; see place name index.]
- Augusta, Bedford, Botetourt, Culpeper and Fincastle Payrolls and Public Service Claims, 1775: Also Known as Dunmore's War: Enlarged and Photocopied. Fort Wayne, Indiana: Allen County Public Library, 2004. Available at FHL.
- Crozier, William Armstrong. Virginia Colonial Militia 1651-1776. Baltimore: Southern Book Co., 1954. Available at FHL; digital book at Ancestry ($). [Identifies some Botetourt County militia officers and soldiers; see place name index.]
Regiments. Service men in Botetourt County served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Botetourt County supplied soldiers for the:
- A Census of Pensioners for Revolutionary or Military Services: With their Names, Ages, and Places of Residence, as Returned by the Marshalls of the Several Judicial Districts, Under the Act for Taking the Sixth Census]. 1841. Digital version at Google Books. 1967 reprint: FHL Collection 973 X2pc 1840. [See Virginia, Western District, Bottetourt County on pages 133-134.]
- Rejected or Suspended Applications for Revolutionary War Pensions. Washington, D.C., 1852. Reprinted by Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1969, and 1991. Reprints include "an Added Index to States." FHL Book 973 M24ur; digital version at Ancestry ($). [Includes veterans from this county; Virginia section begins on page 238.]
- Worrell, Anne Lowry. Early Marriages, Wills, and Some Revolutionary War Records: Botetourt County, Virginia. Baltimore, MD: Genealogical Pub. Co., 1976 (Originally published: Hillsville, Va.: A.L. Worrell, 1958. FHL Collection; digital version at World Vital Records ($)
War of 1812
Botetourt County men served in the 48th and 121st Regiments.
- List of Pensioners on the Roll, January 1, 1883; Giving the Name of Each Pensioner, the Cause for Why Pensioned, the Post-Office Address, the Rate of Pension Per Month, and the Date of Original Allowance... Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1883. FHL Collection 973 M2Lp v. 5; digital versions at Google Books and Internet Archive. [See Vol. 5, Virginia, Botetourt County, p. 64.]
Regiments. Service men in Botetourt County, Virginia Genealogy served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in Botetourt County, Virginia Genealogy:
- - 5th Regiment, Virginia State Line (Cavalry, Artillery, and Infantry) (Confederate). Company H may have been recruited in Botetourt County.
- - 28th Regiment, Virginia Infantry (Confederate). Company A (Blue Ridge Rifles) and Company I (Mountain Rifles).
Records and histories are available, including:
- Virginia, Civil War Service Records of Confederate Soldiers 1861-1865
- Virginia, Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers 1861-1865
Virginia Naturalization Petitions, 1906-1929
The Virginia Newspapers Project identifies local Botetourt County, Virginia Genealogy newspapers.
Indexed images of the Virginia Gazette (1736-1780) are available online through the Colonial Williamsburg website. In addition, Professor Tom Costa and The Rector and Visitors of the University of Virginia have created a database of all runaway advertisements for slaves, indentured servants, transported convicts, and ship deserters listed in this source and other Virginia newspapers (1736-1803), see: The Geography of Slavery in Virginia. These newspapers are valuable resources for all regions of Virginia.
- 1800 - Herald of Virginia (Fincastle, Va.) at Genealogy Bank ($).
- 1801 - Fincastle Weekly Advertiser (Fincastle, Va.) at Genealogy Bank ($).
- 1821-1823 - Herald of the Valley (Fincastle, Va.) at Genealogy Bank ($).
- 1823-1825 - Mirror (Fincastle, Va.) at Genealogy Bank ($).
- Cutten, George Barton. The Silversmiths of Virginia (together with Watchmakers and Jewelers) from 1694 to 1850. Richmond, Va.: The Dietz Press, Incorporated, 1952. Available at FHL. [Includes a section on Fincastle silversmiths.]
- Stewart, William C. "Mercantile Adventures in Early Virginia, John Stewart, Tailor of Augusta and Botetourt Counties," The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 11, No. 1 (Jan.-Mar. 1967):3-11; Vol. 11, No. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1967):61-66. Digital version at American Ancestors ($).
Watauga Association of Genealogists Bulletin
Genealogical articles with abstracts of Botetourt County, Virginia records have been published in the Watauga Association of Genealogists Bulletin (39+ vols., 1972-present), the journal of the Watauga Association of Genealogists. The organization has posted tables of contents for most volumes on their website. Back issues are available for purchase. The Family History Library has a complete collection FHL US/CAN Books 976.897 B2w, including Margaret W. Hougland and Betty Jane Hylton's Bulletin Subject Index: The First Thirty Years, 1972-2001 (Johnson City, Tenn.: Watauga Association of Genealogists, 2002) FHL US/CAN Book 976.897 B2w index 1972-2001.
A free index to Botetourt County, Virginia Genealogy wills and administrations (1770-1800) is available at the Library of Virginia website.
- Worrell, Anne Lowry. Early Marriages, Wills, and Some Revolutionary War Records: Botetourt County, Virginia. Baltimore, MD: Genealogical Pub. Co., 1976 (Originally published: Hillsville, Va.: A.L. Worrell, 1958. Available at FHL. Digital version available at World Vital Records ($)
- Digital Images of Botetourt County Wills 1824-1829; 1829-1838. See names of Testators. Virginia Pioneers
- [1770-1789] Botetourt County, Virginia Lists of Tithables, 1770-1789. Original records, Botetourt County Courthouse, Fincastle, Virginia; also available on microfilm at FHL.
- [1770-1777] Burton, Charles T. Botetourt County, Virginia, Its Men, 1770-1777. Troutville, Virginia: C.T. Burton, [197-?]. Available at FHL. [Contains names of tithable men in Botetourt Co., 1770-1777. Includes delinquent lists.]
- [1770-1771] Creekmore, Pollyanna. "Botetourt County, Virginia, Tithables, 1770-1771," The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 10, No. 2 (Apr.-Jun. 1966):51-56; Vol. 10, No. 3 (Jul.-Sep. 1966):109-122. Available at FHL; digital version at American Ancestors ($).
- [1770-1773] Kegley, Mary B. New River Tithables, 1770-1773. Wytheville, Virginia: M.B. Kegley, 1972. Available at FHL.
-  Tithables, 1782, Magazine of Virginia Genealogy, Vol. 33, No. 3 (Summer 1995). FHL; digital version at Ancestry ($).
-  Land Tax List, 1782, Watauga Association of Genealogists Bulletin, Vol. 3, Nos. 1-2 (1974).
- [Pre-1783] County Delinquents List, Pre-Revoluntionary War Period, Magazine of Virginia Genealogy, Vol. 41, No. 3 (Aug. 2003). Available at FHL.
- [1783-1822] Heinegg, Paul. "Botetourt County Personal Property Tax List 1783-1822," Free African Americans.com, available online. [Heinegg abstracted free blacks listed in these records.]
-  Douthat, James L. 1784 Botetourt County, Virginia Tax Listing. Signal Mountain, Tenn.: Mountain Press, 2012. Free online surname index and publisher's bookstore.
-  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. [1784 personal property tax list of Botetourt County.]
-  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. Botetourt County is included in Vol. 1.]
-  Indexed images of the 1789 Personal Property Tax List of Botetourt County, Virginia are available online, courtesy: Binns Genealogy.
-  Images of the 1799 Personal Property Tax List of Botetourt County, Virginia are available to browse online, courtesy: Binns Genealogy.
-  "Botetourt County, Virginia 1800 Tax List," The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 9, No. 3 (Jul.-Sep. 1965):105-110; Vol. 9, No. 4 (Oct.-Dec. 1965):154-158; Vol. 10, No. 1 (Jan.-Mar. 1966):11-17. Available at FHL; digital version at American Ancestors ($).
-  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. Botetourt County is included in Vol. 5.]
-  Taxable Property of Botetourt, 1852, Roanoke Historical Society Journal, Vol. 5, No. 2 (Winter 1969).
Indexes to Botetourt 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
- 1850s - Botetourt County Birth Register (VAGenWeb). Transcript and images.
- 1885-1896 - Fridley, Beth, comp. Botetourt County, Virginia Births, 1885-96 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2000. Available at Ancestry ($).
- Worrell, Anne Lowry. Early Marriages, Wills, and Some Revolutionary War Records: Botetourt County, Virginia. Baltimore, MD: Genealogical Pub. Co., 1976 (Originally published: Hillsville, Va.: A.L. Worrell, 1958. Available at FHL. Digital version available at World Vital Records ($).
- 1770-1803 - Botetourt Co. VA, Marriages 1770-1803. Sorted by groom; sorted by bride (VAGenWeb).
- 1853-1870 - Botetourt County Death Records (VAGenWeb). Transcripts.
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.
|For birth, marriage, and death record substitutes, see Bible Records, Cemeteries, Church Records, Newspapers, and Probate Records.|
Societies and Libraries
Botetourt County Historical Society
1 West Main Street
P O Box 468
Fincastle, Virginia 24090
Family History Centers
- Botetourt County, Virginia USGENWEB
- Family History Library Catalog
- Cyndi's List
- Virginia Pioneers ($)
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Botetourt County, Virginia. Page 711 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
- WorldCat 50140092 FHL CollectionHandybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed.] (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002)
- A Census of Pensioners for Revolutionary or Military Services: With their Names, Ages, and Places of Residence, as Returned by the Marshalls of the Several Judicial Districts, Under the Act for Taking the Sixth Census] (1841), 133-134. Digital version at Google Books. 1967 reprint: FHL Book 973 X2pc 1840.
- Kenneth Scott, British Aliens in the United States During the War of 1812 (Baltimore, Md.: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1979), 325. FHL Book 973 W4s; digital version at Ancestry ($).
- USGS Map, Topozone.com
- 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.
- Family History Library Catalog, FamilySearch, www.familysearch.org.
- E.M. Sanchez-Saavedra, A Guide to Virginia Military Organizations in the American Revolution, 1774-1787 (Richmond, Va.: Virginia State Library, 1978), 67-68. FHL Book 975.5 M2s.
- J.T. McAllister, Virginia Militia in the Revolutionary War: McAllister's Data (Hot Springs, Va.: McAllister Pub. Co., 1913), 24-25. Digitized by Internet Archive.
- Stuart Lee Butler, A Guide to Virginia Militia Units in the War of 1812 (Athens, Ga.: Iberian Pub. Co., 1988), 54. FHL Book 975.5 M2bs.
- The Virginia State Line: Organizational Structure of the Virginia State Line, Ranger95.com, accessed 11 June 2012.
- Frank E. Fields, 28th Virginia Infantry (Lynchburg, Va.: H.E. Howard, 1985). FHL Book 975.5 M2vr v. 15.