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TGS Home, 1884 Court House

The TGS library is open on
Tuesdays and Thursdays 10am-3pm and Saturdays 10am-4pm (closed on holidays and holiday weekends).  

 
The library is usually staffed with two trained volunteer genealogists.

Click on a photo for the larger image.

 The Hugh S. Watson, Jr. Genealogical Society of Tidewater Virginia (also known as Tidewater Genealogical Society) was founded by Mrs. Virginia Rollings and members of her first genealogy class in December 1969 giving our Society the distinction of being the second oldest genealogical society in Virginia.

 Through the efforts of several individuals in the Tidewater Genealogical Society, the Newport News - Warwick Historical Preservation Association and State & Local Governmental Officials, our Society entered its first home in 1999, located in the historic 1884 Warwick County Courthouse Building in Denbigh.

 The Warwick County Courthouse has changed significantly since we moved into the building ten years ago. At that time, members of TGS removed the ballet bars from the rooms once used by a dance studio. The court room with the help of NNWHPA was given a fresh court of paint and the building thoroughly cleaned. However, it needed much more. Through the guiding efforts of John Quarstein and others employed by the City of Newport News, the exterior and interior have been completely restored to its former glory. The beautiful double staircases leading to the old courtroom upstairs were refinished. The entrance foyer now features an exhibit covering Warwick County from its plantation period, through the War Between the States, to the coming of the railroad to the county.

 The Tidewater Genealogical Society Library is on the first floor as well as the media room which has seven computers and printers, a microfilm reader and overflow books from the library across the hall. The Library and Media Room are open to the public three days each week as well as by appointment.  

 The 1810 Courthouse, also part of the historic complex, is situated in close proximity to old Courthouse Way. It is reminiscent of earlier times when the population of the county was very small and did not require a large courthouse. In fact during the Civil War a Union soldier camped on the grounds wrote back home “we have a corn crib larger than the courthouse.”

 Recently, the Clerk’s Office was rebuilt on its original site next to the 1810 Courthouse, adding still another link to the past.

 The land area on which these historic buildings stand is not large, but the years have not diminished the beauty of these architectural treasures of old Warwick County, Virginia .

 On the 23rd of May 2009, Fort Eustis Historical and Archaeological Association, the Bethel Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy and the Tidewater Genealogical Society combined efforts to rededicate the Civil War Monument which was originally dedicated in May 1909.  

 

 

© 2014 Tidewater Genealogical Society
Webmaster: 
Katherine Nice
Last updated:  12/16/2013