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  • Acquisitions News: Sources at NEHGS for the (Atlantic) Coastal South

    Published Date : October-November 1990
     As noted in the April NEXUS (7[1990]:55) this column features significant new acquisitions of books and micro-forms (and underused resources already at NEHGS), both to bring them to your attention and to explain (where necessary) how they may be used to advantage.  George F. Sanbom, Jr., our Director of Library Operations, and the Technical Services Division of the Library are committed to making the “Hist-Gen” collection second to none in targeted collecting areas.

    Earlier columns in this series discussed new resources for New England and the mid-Atlantic states. Moving south we shall now consider the Atlantic coastal area of Virginia, North and South Carolina, Georgia and Florida.  For these states and the South overall, our exchange programs with Genealogical Publishing Co. (GPC) of Baltimore and Southern Historical Press (SHP) in Easley, S.C., have been especially useful.  NEHGS has also bought many volumes of Southern county records, for Virginia especially.  Altogether, our Southern holdings have probably doubled in the past decade.


    Most notable among Virginia publications of the last few years are the GPC reprints from periodicals -Genealogies of Virginia Families from The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography [VM] (5 vols.), from the William and Mary College Quarterly (5 vols.) and from Tyler’s Quarterly (4 vols.) - plus five volumes of source data (Virginia Vital, Marriage, Will, Tax and Military Records) from the same journals, and a volume of English origins material, collected by Lothrop Withington and published in VM, entitled Genealogical Gleanings in Virginia.  These 21 volumes, all separately indexed, cull almost all genealogically useful data from the three classic older Virginia periodicals, complete runs of which are also in our collections.  J. F. Dorman’s Index to The Virginia Genealogist, Volumes 1-20, 1957-1976, covers the major successor to the older journals, and we again possess a complete run.  These 22 volumes act as a guide to the huge Virginia periodical literature.  Family genealogies, county histories, multi-family compendia and even some manuscripts in Virginia libraries are subject-indexed in R.A. Stewart’s Index to Printed Virginia Genealogies (1930, reprint 1965) and Stuart F. Brown, Jr.’s Virginia Genealogies (1967, 1980).  We own most of the non-manuscript data indexed in these last.  In general the printed Virginia literature covers the Tidewater plantation aristocracy (Randolphs, Carters, Lees, Byrds, Washingtons, etc.) quite well, but residents of Southside Virginia (below and west of Richmond) and the Shenandoah Valley much less so.

    In addition to the 21 volumes of GPC journal reprints, three compendia, all at NEHGS, also belong in any personal library of “essential” Virginia works.  These are Adventurers of Purse and Person, Virginia, 1607-1624/5, 3rd ed. (1987), covering the Jamestowners or “first generation” Virginians, who came before the Cavaliers and Restoration-era grantees and gentry; H. E. Hayden’s Virginia Genealogies, covering many northern Tidewater families sometimes associated with Washington, D.C. or Maryland; and The Edward Pleasants Valentine Papers.  Recent compilations of source records include Cavaliers and Pioneers: Abstracts of Virginia Land Patents and Grants, 3 vols. (covering 1623-1732), Virginia’s Colonial Soldiers (1988), and The 1787 Census of Virginia, 3 vols. (1987).

    The Carolinas, Georgia and Florida

    Major North Carolina acquisitions include marriage bonds through 1868 (88 microfiche), all GPC volumes of county marriages (many by Brent Holcomb), over 40 volumes of contemporary county mugbooks known as the Heritage series (as in The Heritage of Alexander County), the authoritative 1980 North Carolina Research by Helen Leary and Maurice Stirewalt, and, among compendia, the fine Dictionary of N. C. Biography, 3 vols. to date, covering A-K. An important older holding is The Colonial Land and [State] Records of North Carolina, 1st ser. (30 vols., 1886-1914) and 2nd scr. (4 vols., 1963-74).  South Carolina holdings include the entire body of work produced by Brent Holcomb and Rev. S.F. Lucas of SHP, including The S.C. Magazine of Ancestral Research and the index to its first 10 volumes, South Carlina Marriages (2 vols. plus supplement, covering 1688-1820), several volumes of newspaper marriage and deatl notices, and S.C. Deed Abstracts, 7719-1772, 4 vols.  Also pivotal are Caroline T. Moore’s will abstracts covering Charleston, 1670-1784, 3 vols., and South Carolina Genealogies: Articles from the S.C. Historical (and Genealogical) Magazine, 5 vols., which cover many Charleston planter families authoritatively. NEHGS owns complete run of the parent magazine of this last, and of Transactions of the Huguenot Society of South Carolina.

    In addition to Colonial Records of the State of Georgia (32 vols.), full sets of The Georgia Historical Quarterly and The Georgia Genealogical Magazine, and much county material, some newly published by Lucas, our collections also include all bounty grant and land lottery volumes, and two older but useful compendia -A List of the Early Settlers of Georgia (1949, reprint 1967, 1983), on the followers of Oglethorpe; and Folks Huxford’s Pioneers of Wiregrass Georgia, 6 vols. (195 1-1971), covering the southernmost early counties.  A small Florida section consists largely of journals - The Florida Historical Quarterly (partly on film), The Florida Genealogist, Ancestry (journal of the Palm Beach Co. Genealogical Society), and Jacksonville Genealogical Society Quarterly.  One compendium of note is David Avant’s Some Southern Colonial Families (3 vols., 1983-1989), whose 1974 predecessor was Florida Pioneers.  The early Spanish families of St. Augustine have not, unfortunately, been comprehensively treated in print.

    For all of these states, as for their mid-Atlantic and New England counterparts covered earlier; the Society has also purchased all available census indexes (mostly through 1850 or 1860) and has been given many census reels.  More of these last are eagerly sought.

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