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York County Records Project

An Index and Abstract of York County Records

An index card for Christopher Abbott.
A sample entry. Records in the index are organized by surname and then by date.
An index card for Old Judy.
The index includes a slave first name and surname file, such as this entry for Old Judy.

The York County Records Project is an index and abstract of the York County records from 1633–1815. Records in the index are organized by surname and then by date. Records include:

  • deeds
  • wills
  • inventories
  • court orders (civil suits and criminal cases)

The Project also includes a computer-generated plat map of York County that locates families on the land with which they are historically associated. These identifications originated with the 1704 quit-rent rolls (listing names and number of acres involved) collected for the Crown and sent to England.

Using the Index

Microfilm copies of the index (M-1797, 1-152), the original York County records (M1.1-46), and the York County plat map are available in Special Collections.


About the York County Records

York County contained part of Williamsburg in the 18th century, and many of the city's inhabitants were involved in York County court cases or filed their wills and inventories in York County. The York County records are of especial value because the legal papers of James City County and the City of Williamsburg were burned during the Civil War.

Goals of the Project

Researchers using the index have contributed to scholarship on urbanization and colonial social development, as a sampling of theses, dissertations, published books, and monographs demonstrates.

In addition, the Project has augmented the interpretation of Colonial Williamsburg's Historic Area. Colonial Williamsburg staff continue to plumb the rich body of material accumulated by the Project for details of everyday 18th-century life, including slavery, family, religion, consumerism, taming the land, westward expansion, and the American Revolution.


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