Recent News

King & Queen Historical Society Meeting set for Sunday, April 27 at 3:00pm

The King & Queen Historical Society will hold its quarterly meeting on Sunday, April 27 starting at 3:00pm in the New Court House Building in King and Queen Court House, Virginia. Dr. Carl Lounsburg, member of the Architectural Research Department at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation since 1982, will speak on The Chesapeake House. This illustrated talk explores some of the themes that are at the heart of the study of early American architecture. Dr. Lounsburg is responsible for long term research projects including public buildings, 17th and 18th century theaters, building craftsmen, 17th century rowhouses, churches and meeting houses. In addition to research, he has taught at the University of Mary Washington, Virginia Commonwealth University and the University of Virginia. Join us as he shares these experiences and answers questions that are of interest to you.

Bring a friend!!! Refreshments will follow this program in the Tavern Museum.

Bulletin 115 Presents York River Brand Black Eye Peas & Politics

Bulletin 115 of the King and Queen County Historical Society of Virginia is now available. The primary topic "It's Lucky to Eat York River Black Eye Peas On New Year's Day" is an entertaining account of how this humble vegetable, grown in the county and canned in Walkerton under the York River brand during the first half of the Twentieth Century, made national political news.

Members of the King and Queen Historical Society receive The Bulletin semiannually. Non-members can purchase this edition and back issues for $2.00 each. To purchase enter 115 in the Bulletin issue box on the Shop page.

King and Queen Historical Society Meeting Set for Sunday, January 26 at 3:00 P.M.

The King and Queen Historical Society's first meeting of 2014 will be held on Sunday, January 26 starting at 3:00 P.M. in the Old Courthouse Building located next to the Courthouse Tavern Museum. Mary Miley Theobald, a respected writer/historian, will speak about "The Roaring Twenties", a unique decade of the Twentieth Century that careened from the heights of vaudeville and silent film to the depths of prohibition. Mary received her BA and MA in history from the College of William and Mary. She taught American history and Museum Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University for thirteen years and is the author of over 175 magazine articles, most on history, travel, and business topics, and of nine nonfiction books. Her most recent novel “The Impersonator”, a mystery, is a First Novel Award Winner. Refreshments will follow at the Tavern Museum and the public is cordially invited. Mary will also be available to sign books. It will be fun!!

Click here for full event details

The Courthouse Tavern Museum Closes Until Saturday, February 15, 2014

On Sunday December 15 the Courthouse Tavern Museum closed for the winter. The Museum will reopen Saturday, February 15 from 10am to 4pm. The February openings will be limited to Saturday February 15, Sunday February 16, Saturday February 22, and Sunday February 23. Hours on Saturday are 10am-4pm and on Sunday from 1-5pm.

Our regular schedule will resume in March: Fridays and Saturdays from 10am-4pm and Sundays from 1-5pm.

Special requests for access may be made by contacting the Museum via this website.

The Courthouse Tavern Museum Celebrates Christmas

On Sunday December 1, 2013 the Courthouse Tavern Museum celebrated the Christmas season with its annual open house. Attendees visited with each other while munching on donuts cooked over an open fire and sipping warm apple cider or hot chocolate. The Christian Heirs Quartet set a festive mood with traditional Christmas carols. Children visited with Santa in his sleigh and rode in a cart pulled by a miniature horse. A special visitor, "Robert E. Lee", greeted guests. One visitor had an opportunity to acquaint his granddaughter with her roots in King and Queen County. It was a wonderful start to the holiday season!

2013 Christmas Open House Celebration


Spend an afternoon with family and friends at the KING AND QUEEN COURTHOUSE TAVERN MUSEUM SUNDAY DECEMBER 1, 2013 2:00pm to 5:00pm

Visit "Santa"‚ Wallace Mahanes, on his sleigh.

Children, take a cart ride with Brownie Bevans's miniature horses.

Chat with "General Robert E. Lee", Mark Favazza, as he strolls through the Court House Green.

Munch on delicious donuts and popcorn prepared over an open fire by Nancy Herman-Thompson and Susan Spain.

Listen to the golden voices of the Christian Heirs Quartet.

Sing along with the Aylett Country Day School children's choir.

Keep warm with Sally Walker's famous hot apple cider and tasty cookies.

Follow Biddie Shelor's train through the snowy countryside and Christmas village.

Christmas shop at the Museum's gift shop.

King and Queen Marriage Records Now Available in the Museum Library

Titles: King and Queen County, Virginia Marriage Records: Transcripts of Consents, Affidavits, Minister Returns, and Marriage Licenses, Volume 1: 1853-1874 and Volume 2: 1875-1886. Volume 1, 383 pages, includes 1,019 marriages, and Volume 2, 361 pages, includes 922 marriages. Published by Suzanne P. Derieux and Wesley E. Pippenger of Tappahannock, Virginia.

Researchers may be aware that the public records for King and Queen County were in most part destroyed by fires in April 1828 and 1864. The compilers collected data from six main sources: (1) a modern typewritten index to marriages, (2) bound Certificates to Obtain a Marriage License that begin in September 1867; (3) a bound register of marriages that begins in 1872 (in the Circuit Court Clerk's office); (4) loose register pages from the Auditor of Public Accounts (at the Library of Virginia); (5) loose marriage licenses that begin in 1858; and (6) records from local area churches. The compilers consulted numerous other sources to insert in brackets information missing in the original marriage record. For example, maiden names or names of parents that are blank in one marriage and may be present in another, or complete names may be inscribed on a cemetery tombstone. These types of additions are inserted in brackets in these publications. Also included in each volume is a list of abbreviations, list of ministers and their denominations and church associations (if known), and a transcription of applicable laws affecting marriages or the keeping of marriage records.

A Map Leads to Family

On a quiet summer day, a gentleman came into the Museum looking for a map of the county with road names. The Museum sells maps, but they did not provide what the visitor was seeking. After touring the Museum, he asked about resources for genealogical research. He found the Museum library very helpful and planned to return to do more research. As he was leaving he noticed the Gilmer Civil War maps of King and Queen County. These have no road names, but do have the names of the local land owners during the war. On examination, he found family names of interest and bought the map.

Confirming a Beverley Family Connection

A mother and her two daughters traveled to the Museum from Florida, California, and Scotland seeking confirmation of a family connection. How was Ursula Beverley (maiden name) related to Robert Beverley and his wife Ursula Byrd Beverley of Beverley Park in the upper part of King and Queen County? Prior to their visit they contacted the Museum and provided some basic information about the families of interest that lived before 1800. Museum volunteers compiled potential references prior to the visit. Most of the day was spent combing through much of this material with little success. However, at the last minute they were delighted to find the connection they were seeking: Ursula was the daughter of Robert Beverley’s son. The visitors were very complimentary of the materials available to researchers.

Bikers Visit Museum

In August the Museum welcomed 20 bikers participating in a history tour sponsored by Local Cycle Events, owned by Rob Richmond and Jack Forehand, to thank the riders for their contributions of time and funds to various charities. They traveled to sites in Gloucester, Matthews, and Middlesex before visiting the King and Queen Courthouse Tavern Museum. Ellen White, President of the Museum Council, greeted the group and docents assisted with the tour of the Museum. The Museum is glad to accommodate groups.