The various physical documents, file folders, and books that we have in our research library in Abingdon, Virginia are cataloged and indexed in three main databases; the online card catalog, the family surname files, and an index of the content within the library holdings.
1. Online Card Catalog
The first database is simply an online card catalog that references the documents and books in the library. This database is an index of the title, author, publication date, and reference number of the library's holdings. You can search the index by clicking on the following link:
The second database is an index of the Family Surname Files. This database contains a listing of surnames for which we have documentation from our own and others' research. Items relating to each surname listed are held in separate, hard copy folders. In general, the folders contain documents which are too brief to be listed in our card catalog, such as newspaper clippings. The database itself is simply an alphabetized list of surnames with no other descriptors. If a name is listed in the index, then it means that we are maintaining a file folder which holds some physical documents relating to that name. Since the surname listing is alphabetized and only six pages long, we have not implemented a search function for the database. If you would like to browse the surname index, you can view the entire listing, which is formatted as a PDF document, by clicking below:
The third database is an ambitious project being undertaken by Society members to develop an index for all the books and documents in the library. It contains a single listing of significant items that occur in the content of all the library holdings such as names, places, buildings, events, etc. As you can surmise, this is a really big database development for our small Society. Society members often refer to it as the "million name" database since it currently has over 1 million records. This is probably the best research tool that we have if you want to do a broad search across all the books and documents in our library. You can search the "million name" database by clicking on the following link:
We can copy limited sections of the library materials for $1 per page, but we cannot copy entire books. If you would like to have copies made, please call us to make arrangements. Our phone number is 276-623-8337
Of course, the best way to utilize the library resources is to visit us in Abingdon! Our hours are 10-4 pm Tuesday-Saturday. We are closed on Sunday and Monday. Also remember the society is closed on all Federal holidays and closes during inclement winter weather. The library is staffed by volunteers and there are times when we do not have enough staff available to keep the library open five days a week. If you are planning a trip to visit us, please call ahead to be sure we will be open
Digitized Image Collection
In addition to the our library holdings, the Historical Society has been developing a collection of digitized images. The image database is rapidly expanding and we currently have over 160,000 digitally scanned images of photographs and documents. The database records include: digitized photographs of people in various scenes both posed and candid; images of churches, houses, schools, bridges, mills, railroads, tombstones, historical scenes, etc.; and images of documents covering a wide range of historical interest, such as marriage certificates, obituaries, military documents, letters, newspaper articles, business receipts, etc. You can search our digital image collection by clicking on the following link:
The actual images are only available for viewing at the Historical Society Library in Abingdon, Virginia. However, digital copies of the images can be purchased using the order form shown below. Note that each image has a Picture ID Number. This number can be used on the order form to identify the specific image you wish to purchase. Just follow the ordering instructions below. If you have further questions regarding the digitized image collection, please contact us at:
How to Order Photographs and Digitized Documents
Copies of photographs and images of documents for personal use can be ordered in person at the Historical Society Library, or ordered by mail.
PRICES FOR PHOTOGRAPHS:
$5 each Emailed in .jpg format
$10 each Printed and mailed via USPS, or picked up
PRICES FOR DOCUMENTS:
$4/page Emailed in .jpg format
$7/page Printed and mailed via USPS or picked up
To order, download and complete one of the following request forms. Then mail the completed form and payment to:
Historical Society of Washington County, Virginia P.O. Box 484 Abingdon, VA 24212-0484
For those researchers unable to visit our Society, we are happy to answer one or two specific questions for a $20 research fee.
1. To Submit Your Request Online
First, download and complete one of the following request forms. The Genealogy Research Request Form is for research related to your family history, while the General Research Request Form is for non-genealogical research questions.
Then click the "Order Now" button below, which will take you to the payment page. The online order is $20, which may be paid by credit card or PayPal.
Item: 202 Research Request Price: $20.00
Finally, e-mail the completed research request form to:
email@example.com . Please allow up to 10 weeks for your request to be answered. We have a limited number of volunteer researchers.
2. To Submit Your Request By Mail
Please print, complete, and mail the appropriate research request form along with a $20 check, to:
Historical Society of Washington County, Virginia
P.O. Box 484
Abingdon, VA 24212-0484
Since we have a limited number of volunteer researchers, please allow up to 10 weeks for your request to be answered.
Most of our staff are volunteers. We derive funding from memberships, donations and store sales. Monies received are used to meet library operating expenses and for the preservation of our regional history. Your donation supports our mission to collect and preserve the history of Washington County, Virginia. Please give what you can. Any contribution will be greatly appreciated.
Volunteering is the cornerstone of the Society organization and activities. Volunteer opportunities range from greeting visitors, program and event planning, genealogy research, assisting guests in the research library, researching and setting up new exhibits in the museum, and cataloging items. We seek a diverse group of volunteers of any age who can apply their skills, interests and experiences to a wide range of assignments either on a regular basis or for a one time project/event. Please consider volunteering, your help and support are needed.
To inquire about volunteer opportunities, please contact the Society by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call at 1-276-623-8337. We would love to hear from you.
BECOME A SOCIETY MEMBER
Members of the Historical Society of Washington County, Virginia are joined in a profound respect for history and share a sense of duty to maintain the historical record of the past people, places, and events which have defined our region. We invite you to join us in our preservation efforts. Become a member and receive exclusive discounts and privileges, including: invitations to member-only events, a subscription to the Society Newsletter, and member access to research resources.
If you wish to apply or renew, just click on the card to access the Memberships section of our Store page. You may also call the office at 276-623-8337 and mail us a check for your dues.