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Vance County Genealogy

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Vance County is a county located in the U.S. state of North Carolina. As of 2000, the population was 42,954. Its county seat is Henderson.

The county was formed in 1881 from parts of Franklin County, Granville County, and Warren County. According to the 1955 book, Zeb’s Black Baby, by Samuel Thomas Peace Sr., “The formation of Vance County was accomplished largely as a political expediency. It was in 1881 when Blacks in large numbers were voting solidly Republican. Granville and Franklin Counties were nip and tuck, Democratic or Republican. From the Democratic standpoint, Warren County was hopelessly Republican. But by taking from Granville, Franklin and Warren, those sections that were heavily Republican and out of these sections forming the new county of Vance, the Democratic party could lose Vance to the Republicans and save Granville and Franklin for the Democrats. [U.S.] Senator [Zebulon Baird] Vance was a Democrat. He took kindly to this move and thanked the [North Carolina] Legislature for honoring him with naming the new county after him. At the same time…Vance showed his humor by always referring to Vance County as ‘Zeb’s Black Baby.'” In the 1890 Census, Vance County was more than 63 percent African American.

Zebulon Baird Vance was a Governor of North Carolina (1862-1865, 1877-1879) and United States senator (1879-1894). In 1881, he was arguably the state’s most popular politician.

Kerr Lake is in Vance County and is the largest man made lake east of the Mississippi River (50,000 acres). It was designed as flood control for Eastern North Carolina. It is currently a state recreation area and tourist attraction. The lake was named for congressman John H. Kerr a supporter of the lake project.

Vance County Tourism Department

The county is divided into eight townships: Dabney, Henderson, Kittrell, Middleburg, Sandy Creek, Townsville, Watkins, and Williamsboro.

Source Wikipedia.

Vance County History – article from the official Vance County Web Site.

Vance County Genealogy Resources

Vance County NCGenweb site Official NCGenweb Site

USGenWeb Archives – for Vance County, NC Genealogy Document Transcriptions

NCVance – Independent Vance County History and Genealogy Site (Not affiliated with the Genweb Project.)

Vance County, North Carolina American History and Genealogy Project

Vance County Historical Society
P.O. Box 2284
Henderson, NC 27536


Vance County Government

Vance County Government
122 Young Street
Henderson, NC 27536

Register of Deeds
Vance County
122 Young Street, Suite F
Henderson, NC 27536
8:30am – 5:00pm

H. Leslie Perry Memorial Library
205 Breckenridge St.
Henderson, NC 27536
Telephone: (252) 438-3316

A local newspaper for Vance County is The Daily Dispatch Henderson, NC



USGS Listing of Cemeteries in Vance County, NC

Cemetery Transcriptions – at NCVance (Plank Chapel at time of posting)

Cemetery Transcriptions – USGenWeb Tombstone Transcription project – Island Creek Baptist Church, Kittrell Confederate Cemetery, Plank Chapel, Savage Cemetery, Woodlief Cemetery.

Cemetery Transcriptions – WPA historical records survey (1940) – Pre 1914 burials only.

Kittrell Confederate Cemetery transcription – at NCGenWeb site for Vance County.

Cemetery Transcriptions 30-35 text files with cemetery name as title of file – USGenweb Archives – may duplicate information at the Tombstone Transcription project.

Vance County Cemetery Census

Query Forums

Vance County, NC Query Forum

Latest North Carolina Genealogy Query posts for Vance County from the Forum:

Vance County, NC at Genforum

Cities and Towns of Vance County, NC

* Henderson
* Kittrell
* Middleburg
* South Henderson

News related to Vance County, NC

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