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Clarke County, Virginia Genealogy

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Guide to Clarke County, Virginia ancestry, family history and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, immigration records, and military records.


Clarke County, Virginia
Boundary map of Clarke County, Virginia
Map of Virginia highlighting Clarke County
Location in the state of Virginia
Map of the U.S. highlighting Virginia
Location of Virginia in the U.S.
Founded 1836
County Seat Berryville

County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

Clarke County is located in the Northern portion of the Commonwealth of Virginia and included in the Washington, DC Metropolitan area. Clarke County was named for revolutionary war hero, George Rogers Clark[1].

Clarke County Virginia Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Clarke County Courthouse
P.O. Box 189
102 N. Church Street
Berryville, Virginia 22611-0189
Phone: 540-995-5116

Clerk Circuit Court has marriage, divorce, probate, court and land records from 1836[2]

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[3]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1853 1836 1853 1836 1836 1836 1810
Statewide registration for births and deaths began in 1912.
General compliance year is unknown.

Clarke County Virginia History[edit | edit source]

George Rogers Clark (1751-1818)

The county was named after George Rogers Clark (1751-1818), a prominent military officer in the Revolutionary War.[4]

Parent County[edit | edit source]

1836--Clarke County was created 8 March 1836 from Frederick County.
County seat: Berryville [2]

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

For animated maps illustrating Virginia county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation Virginia County Boundary Maps" (1617-1995) may be viewed for free at the website.

Variant Spellings[edit | edit source]

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.

  • Lost census: 1890

Clarke County Virginia Places/Localities[edit | edit source]

Populated Places[edit | edit source]

For a complete list of populated places, including small neighborhoods and suburbs, visit HomeTown Locator. The following are the most historically and genealogically relevant populated places in this county:[6]

  • White Post
Unincorporated communities
Census-designated places

Clarke County Virginia Genealogy Resources[edit | edit source]

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

  • A Guide to the Counties of Virginia: Clarke County. By John Frederick Dorman. The Virginia Genealogist, Vol. 8, No. 1 (Jan.-Mar. 1964):23. FHL; digital version at American Ancestors ($).
  • Finding Your People in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. 1998. By Rebecca H. and Rebecca A. Ebert Good. Bowie, MD : Heritage Books, 4th ed. FHL Book 975 D27e 1998

African Americans[edit | edit source]

Freedmen's Bureau Letters or Correspondence, 1865-1872

Bible Records[edit | edit source]

Images of the Virginia Historical Society's family Bible collection have been digitized:

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Tombstone Transcriptions Online Tombstone Transcriptions in Print List of Cemeteries in the county Family History Library
VAGenWeb WorldCat Billion Graves
VAGenWeb Archives
Tombstone Project
Billion Graves
See Virginia Cemeteries for more information.

Census[edit | edit source]

For tips on accessing Clarke County, Virginia Genealogy census records online, see: Virginia Census.

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1840 6,353
1850 7,352 15.7%
1860 7,146 −2.8%
1870 6,670 −6.7%
1880 7,682 15.2%
1890 8,071 5.1%
1900 7,927 −1.8%
1910 7,468 −5.8%
1920 7,165 −4.1%
1930 7,167 0.0%
1940 7,159 −0.1%
1950 7,074 −1.2%
1960 7,942 12.3%
1970 8,102 2.0%
1980 9,965 23.0%
1990 12,101 21.4%
2000 12,652 4.6%
Source: “American Factfinder”. United States Census Bureau.
1890 Union Veterans

Church Records[edit | edit source]

Baptist[edit | edit source]
Church of England[edit | edit source]

Gotoarrow.pngSee also Frederick Parish

  • Old Chapel and the Parish in Clarke County, Virginia: A History from the Founding of Frederick Parish, 1738 to the Centenary of Christ Church, Millwood, 1932. 1932. By Benjamin Duvall Chambers. Washington, DC : W. F. Roberts Company. Online at: FamilySearch Digital Library, Ancestry ($).

Court[edit | edit source]

Genealogy[edit | edit source]

More than 50 genealogies have been published about Clarke County families. To view a list, visit Clarke County, Virginia Compiled Genealogies.

Land and Property[edit | edit source]

Grants and Patents

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

  • Clarke County, a Daughter of Frederick: A History of Early Families and Homes. 1979. By Rose Mortimer Ellzey MacDonald. Berryville, VA : Blue Ridge Press. Original edition and supplement available at FHL; digital version at Ancestry ($).
  • Historical Collections Of Virginia. 1845. By Henry Howe. Charleston, SC : William R. Babcock.1852 reprint online at: Hathitrust, Internet Archive, Google Books.
  • History of Clarke County, Virginia and Its Connection with the War Between the States : With Illustrations of Colonial Homes and of Confederate Officers. c1914. By Thomas Daniel Gold. Berryville, VA : C.R. Hughes. Online at: FamilySearch Digital Library, Google Books.
  • History of the Lower Shenandoah Valley Counties of Frederick, Berkeley, Jefferson and Clarke: Their Early Settlement and Progress to the Present Time, Geological Features, a Description of Their Historic and Interesting Localities, Cities, Towns and Villages, Portraits of Some of the Prominent Men, and Biographies of Many of the Representative Citizens. 1890. By J. E. Norris. Chicago, IL : A. Warner & Co., Publishers. Online at: FamilySearch Digital Library, Hathitrust, Internet Archive, Google Books.
  • Shenandoah Valley Pioneers and Their Descendants : A History of Frederick County, Virginia (Illustrated) from Its Formation in 1738 to 1908, Compiled Mainly from Original Records of Old Frederick County, Now Hampshire, Berkeley, Shenandoah, Jefferson, Hardy, Clarke, Warren, Morgan and Frederick. c1909. By T. K. Cartmell. Winchester, VA : The Eddy Press Corp. Online at: FamilySearch Digital Library, Ancestry ($); World Vital Records ($).

Maps[edit | edit source]

Loudoun CountyFauquier CountyWarren CountyFrederick CountyJefferson CountyBerkeley CountyVA CLARKE.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

  • Clarke County. 1990. By Eugene M. Scheel. Warrenton, VA : Piedmont Press. Available at FHL. Features include "old roads, mills, stores, plantations, churches, ruins, cemeteries, battles, historic sites, early stream names and boundaries."[7]

Military[edit | edit source]

Revolutionary War[edit | edit source]
  • 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. Washington : Blair and Rives. Online at: Internet Archive, Google Books; At various libraries (WorldCat). See Virginia, Western District, Clark County [sic] on page 134.
War of 1812[edit | edit source]
  • 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... 1883. Washington, D.C : Government Printing Office. Online at: Internet Archive, Google Books. See Vol. 5, Virginia, Clarke County, p. 68.
Civil War[edit | edit source]

Regiments. Service men in Clarke 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 Clarke County, Virginia Genealogy:

- 1st Regiment, Virginia Cavalry (Confederate).
- 2nd Regiment, Virginia Infantry (Confederate). Company C (Nelson Rifles), Company I (Clarke Rifles)
- 6th Regiment, Virginia Cavalry (Confederate). Company D (Clarke Cavalry).[8]
- 11th Regiment, Virginia Cavalry. Company K.[9]
- 23rd Regiment, Virginia Cavalry (Confederate). Company D.[10]

Records and histories are available, including:

Civil War Battle[edit | edit source]

The following Civil War battles were fought in Clarke County.

  • July 17-18, 1864 Cool Spring, also known as Island Ford, Parkers Ford, Snickers Ferry, or Castleman’s Ferry[11]
  • September 3-4, 1864 Berryville[12]
Maps of Civil War battles in Virginia: 1861 and 1862, 1863, 1864, 1865
World War II[edit | edit source]

Miscellaneous Records[edit | edit source]

Naturalization[edit | edit source]

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

The Virginia Newspapers Project identifies local Clarke County, Virginia Genealogy newspapers.

Online Newspapers

Occupations[edit | edit source]

  • The Silversmiths of Virginia (together with Watchmakers and Jewelers) from 1694 to 1850. 1952. By George Barton Cutten. Richmond, Virginia : The Dietz Press, Incorporated. Online at: Hathitrust; At various libraries (WorldCat).

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

Taxation[edit | edit source]

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Indexes to Clarke 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. See also How to order Virginia Vital Records

Birth[edit | edit source]
Marriage[edit | edit source]
Divorce[edit | edit source]
Death[edit | edit source]
Vital Record Substitutes[edit | edit source]

Clarke County Virginia Genealogy Societies and Libraries[edit | edit source]

Family History Centers[edit | edit source]

Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance and free access to premium genealogical websites. In addition, many centers have free how-to genealogy classes.

  • For current information about a center near you, go to the Family History Center MapClarke County Historical Association - P.O.Box 306, 32 E Main St., Berryville, VA 22611--URL: searchable online catalog on website.  Open Thurs-Sat

Clarke County Virginia Genealogy Websites[edit | edit source]

Clarke County Virginia Genealogy References[edit | edit source]

  2. 2.0 2.1 Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Clark County, Virginia. Page 712 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Clarke County, Virginia . Page 710-723 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002; Alice Eichholz, ed. Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources, Third ed. (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 2004), 715-720.
  4. Wikipedia Contributors, "Clarke County, Virginia," in Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia,,_Virginia, accessed 13 January 2012.
  5. 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), 134. Digital version at Google Books. 1967 reprint: FHL Book 973 X2pc 1840.
  6. Wikipedia contributors, "Clarke_ County,_Virginia," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_Virginia#Communities accessed 10 January 2020.
  7. "Historic Prince William Sponsors New Historic Map by Eugene Scheel," The Newsletter of the Prince William County Genealogical Society, Vol. 10, No. 2 (Aug. 1991):10.
  8. Michael P. Musick, 6th Virginia Cavalry (Lynchburg, Va.: H.E. Howard, c1990). FHL Book 975.5 M2vr v. 66.
  9. Richard L. Armstrong, 11th Virginia Cavalry (Lynchburg, Va.: H.E. Howard, c1989). FHL Book 975.5 M2vr v. 52.
  10. Richard B. Kleese, 23rd Virginia Cavalry (Lynchburg, Va.: H.E. Howard, 1995). FHL Book 975.5 M2vr v. 118.
  11. Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State, (accessed 16 August, 2012)
  12. Heritage Preservation Services,Civil War Battle Summaries by State, (accessed 2 August 2012)
  13. Genealogical Society of Utah, Parish and Vital Records List (July 1998). Microfiche. Digital version at