The Genealogical Library is housed in four rooms on the first floor of the Museum. The sources in our library include about 3,000 books, approximately 1,500 files, as well as several maps. These books, include family histories, community history, yearbooks, phone books/city directories, general history, Native American and African American history. The books include many high school yearbooks, local church histories, our obituary collection, and our cemetery database. The files have loose papers on family histories, local businesses, organizations, communities and wars. The knowledgeable staff can also access websites that may be of help to any guests in their research.

Research  Services

 We offer research assistance for patrons unable to visit our library. Searches will include published and unpublished documents in our library, including our extensive survey of county cemeteries, as well as the official documents at the Bedford County Courthouse. Our goal is to provide you with information that is verified by documents or reliable sources, and if anything sent is not documented it will be so indicated.
  We cannot know in advance how long the research will take or how much information we will be able to find. Please allow two to three weeks for us to work on your request; if you have not heard from us in two weeks, please feel free to contact us. The cost is $35 for the first two hours and then $20 an hour afterwards. Members at the Researcher level or higher get a discount on research of $15 an hour.
  All requests are to be in writing (emailed or letter sent to the museum). Be as precise as possible, including spouses, dates, and locations if known. Please do not send us to much information as your request may be lost in the data you send. In your request, indicate the amount of time, that you are willing to pay for us to locate items. If you have several questions, please list them in order of your priority. Include your mailing address, phone number and email address if any.
  Send any requests or inquiries to We accept major credit cards, checks, or Pay-Pal. Please email the payment to Be sure to note on the Pay-Pal order that it is for research. If you need assistance, please call 540-586-4520.

Just a few of the resources housed on the 2nd floor of the Bedford County Courthouse. Resources include court order books, will books, deed books, etc. 

Research  Tools

  • Obituaries from the early 1900's to the present
  • Cemetery index with maps
  • Smith Mountain Lake Cemetery Records
  • Over 250 Surname books: over 40 Leftwich books and 19 Overstreet books
  • 20 drawers of surname files
  • Phone books dating back to the 1930s
  • Over 200 war books: Revolutionary War, War of 1812, Mexican War, Civil War, Spanish - American War, World War I, World War II, over 75 books on the Korean War, The Vietnam War
  • Books on wars including World War II and special files on the Bedford Boys
  • Biographies on famous figures including Robert E. Lee and Thomas Jefferson
  • House files on prominent homes in the Bedford area. We also have files on churches and business from around the area.
  • Collections of church and bible records
  • Over 300 books on surrounding counties from Albemarle to York County
  • The Tinsley Collection: Robert Tinsley's research on Taylor's Mountain.
  • List of Jones Memorial Library Research tools  - This hyperlink includes a list of books and other materials relating to Bedford County, VA, available at the Jones Memorial Library.
  • For a more current list of Jones Memorial Library research tools click the link here:Current Jones Memorial Library Research tools

Get In Touch

Handicapped access is available in the rear of the building.

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Contact Info

Hours of Operation

Monday through Friday 10AM - 5PM
Saturday 10AM - 3PM
Closed on Sundays and National Holidays

Quick Links

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