Essex County, Virginia Episcopal Church Records: St. Anne’s Parish and South Farnham Parish after 1824


This work presents transcripts of a portion of the surviving Episcopal Church records in Essex County, Virginia. Outside of early vestry (processioning) records for South Farnham Parish, which begin July 25, 1739, the earliest surviving church register records start in 1825 when John Peyton McGuire took charge as rector for both the upper parish of St. Anne’s, and the lower parish of South Farnham. Because of his remarkable success in building up these and adjoining parishes, McGuire was called by his brother clergy, “the Apostle of the Rappahannock.”

For St. Anne’s Parish, presented here are the following records: communicants (1825–1903), baptisms (1825–1923), confirmations (1827–1910), marriages (1825–1920), and funerals (1825–1919). Because ministers served multiple congregations, we find appended some records for St. Mary’s Parish, Caroline County: communicants (1831), baptisms (1829–1834), confirmations (1833), marriages (1828–1831), and funerals (1825–1832). Also included are a few records for St. Margaret’s Parish, Caroline County: baptisms (1825–1832), marriages (1839–1840), and funerals (1825). The original records are housed at Vauter's Episcopal Church, Iraville, Virginia.

For South Farnham Parish, presented here are the following records taken from multiple parish registers for 1825–1870 [Register] and 1870–1901 [Register 1]: communicants (1825–1870), baptisms (1825–1900), confirmations (1833–1899), marriages (1825–1901), funerals (1825–1870), and burials (1871–1901). Some communicant, baptism and confirmation records for Lunenburg Parish, which appear at pages 70-72 of the Register, are included.

The goal here is to present information, both content and style, as found in the original records. When text appears within brackets, it has been added by the compiler. Not all pages of the original records are included, primarily because the dates are within the last 100 years, or the minutes about church business are not rich in genealogical data. In some cases, particularly for marriage records, there are important differences in the church record and the public record found at the courthouse in Tappahannock. In these cases, comments have been made in footnotes.

A brief section titled “Background” sets the scene for the records presented herein, and gives basic information about the two parishes in Essex County previous to when the surviving register records begin in 1825. An index to full-names, places and subjects adds to the value of this work.

Wesley E. Pippenger

2024, 8½x11, paper, index, 146 pp.

ISBN: 9780788427862