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Grayson County, Virginia Federal Census — 1870

Transcript by Jeffrey C. Weaver
Annotation by Jeffrey C. Weaver, James J. Stamper and The Grayson County Historical Society



This volume of records is presented in coordination with the Grayson County Bicentennial, coming in 1992. I thought it would worthwhile to do more than transcribe the census of 1870 for this effort, but to analyze the state of the county approximately 100 years after settlement and 5 years after the civil war.

As you will see, when thumbing through the following pages, the basis of this book is the 1870 Federal Census of Grayson Co., VA. Information in parentheses has been gleaned from sources other than the Federal Census. Information in brackets [ ] is commentary and cross references about the family gleaned from the Marriage Register of Grayson and surrounding counties; the 1850 and 1860 Federal Census of Grayson and surrounding counties. Genealogical information is presented as what seems to be correct, by myself and collaborators, though GUARANTEE of accuracy is made. In addition to the standard information you might expect to find in a work of this nature, every effort has been made to give a statistical profile of the county in the section entitled “Analysis of the Record.” Along with a statistical analysis of the census, some other bits of information will be shared with the reader. Some commentary, strictly that of the compiler will be presented as well. Topics to be covered are: Politics of the County, ante and post bellum; Religion, who was there, when, where and why; Migratory patterns into and out of Grayson County.

A special thanks for outstanding contributions to this work go out to:

  • Larry D. Cockerham, for comparisons with other records and annotations made to the census record.
  • John & Betty Mullins, for agreeing to publish this work.
  • James Stamper, for invaluable assistance in preparation of the genealogical notes.
  • Bettye-Lou Kirk Fields, for her coordination of the project within the confines of Grayson County.
  • Louise Bailey, for her contributions to knowledge of families in the Elk Creek Valley.
  • Maxine Hood Luck, for proofreading and comparisons to the census microfilm.
  • To my wife for her patience with my comings and goings and phone bills in preparation of this work.
  • To my ancestors, most all Grayson Countians, without whom I would not have attempted to undertake this work.


Abbreviations used herein:

  • B. – Born
  • D. – Died
  • Md. – Married
  • s/o – son of
  • d/o – daughter of
  • POB – Place of Birth
  • Co. – County

Current State postal abbreviations have been used for places of birth. Abbreviations for months of the year are not consistent with current usage, however, are those used by the census taker.

Spellings used in the transcription portion of this work are as close as I could decipher the original handwriting to be. It should be noted that the census taker had their own spellings for names, not necessarily consistent with modern usage, e.g. Allice for Alice; Margarett for Margaret, Osborn for Osborne, etc.

In some cases it was easy to identify who married whom from marriage registers, others were more tricky. Every effort was made to note if there was room for doubt or other interpretations of the records. In cases of serious doubt, no notation was made, though there were possibilities from information available.

In many cases ages given do match, known ages or ages given in other records. Our effort transcribed what the census taker wrote down, correct or not. If other information was available, then, that information has been noted in the genealogical notes with each family. If no other information was available to us, then no note has been made make a note for that particular family.

All persons listed were listed as white except those with a (B) or (M) after their age. These individuals were listed as black or mulatto respectively. All places of birth, unless otherwise listed, were given as Virginia.

Happy information hunting!

Jeffrey C. Weaver
Arlington, Virginia