The F.B. Kegley Library
The F. B. Kegley Library is a special collection of local history and genealogical materials in the WCC Library. The original collection, bequeathed by F. B. Kegley in 1968, contained books, pamphlets, clippings, census reports, family papers, W. P. A. documents, newspapers, journals, and maps. Since the collection was acquired by the college, many items have been added to it including books, maps, cemetery records, microfilm copies of local newspapers, census reports, court records, photographs, and manuscripts. Additionally, the extensive collections of historians Mary B. Kegley and Dr. W. R. Chitwood, Sr. have been added.
Location: Smyth Hall, in the WCC Library
Parking: In the visitors lot in front of Smyth Hall
Hours: Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Researchers using microfilm may research during regular library hours, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday, Thursday, and Friday and 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday. Summer hours are 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Monday -Friday.
Access: Any researcher may use the Kegley Library; prior notice of intended visits is appreciated but not required. The Kegley Library is a closed-stacks facility. Librarians will retrieve materials for patrons and offer basic guidance for research. We will not do the research for patrons, but we will offer suggestions. Please note that most materials do not circulate.
Catalog: Books and periodical articles are contained in our online catalog.
Copying and Printing: A self-service photocopier, computer printer, and microfilm reader/printers are available. Copies are 10 cents per page.
Materials Available for Research
Books: Books include family histories, local histories, compilations of court records (tax, wills, deeds, etc.), compilations of census records, etc. Books are cataloged in the online catalog and are also accessible through a card file arranged by family name.
Cemetery Records: The library has a card file of over 19,000 individual tombstone inscriptions and a 4-volume listing of cemeteries in Wythe County as well as vertical files with listings for various cemeteries in Wythe and surrounding counties.
Census: Microfilmed records for Bland, Carroll, Grayson, Pulaski, Smyth, and Wythe counties from the formation of the county to 1930. Printed census extracts are also available for these and other southwest Virginia counties. Check the OPAC and finding aid.
Chitwood Subject Albums: These 140 albums contain a rich array of historical and genealogical information on Wythe County and southwest Virginia. Each album has a table of contents and a complete listing of the albums is available. Highlights in these collections, researched and collected by Dr. W. R. Chitwood, include railroads, furnaces, mills, physicians, businesses, schools, medicine, and families.
Court Records: Microfilmed Wythe County court records including deed books, will books, and order books as well as scattered birth, death, and marriage registers are available. A finding aid is available.
Manuscripts: Over 110 manuscript collections including church and school records, military records, business ledgers and daybooks, financial and legal records, correspondence and land records. Printed inventories and an online database (not available on the Internet) provide access. Please note that researchers must abide by stricter research rules while using these materials. Please see the Archivist for additional information.
Maps: Over 400 maps are available – historical and topographical. A card file index of place names provides easy access and staff have also listed some cemetery locations on the topographical maps. A finding aid is available for both the historical and topographical map collections.
Newspapers: The Kegley Library has an extensive collection of newspapers including the Southwest Virginia Enterprise, Wytheville Dispatch, and Wythe County News as well as scattered issues of other regional papers. Of special interest is the Wytheville Disapatch from the Civil War era. A finding aid is available.
Periodicals: Various genealogical and historical periodicals are housed in the Kegley Library and each article has been analyzed in the online catalog.
Photographs: The F. B. Kegley and W.R. Chitwood photograph collections are available to researchers. Photographs in the Mary B. Kegley collection are presently being processed. Please consult the Archivist for further information.
Tax Records: Microfilmed copies of the Wythe County Personal Property Tax Lists for 1793-1850 are available as well as book compilations.
Vertical Files: The Kegley Library boasts over 5 file cabinets of family and subject vertical files containing W. P. A. Papers, pamphlets, research notes, and other material. The research notes and correspondence of historians F. B. Kegley, Mary B. Kegley, and Dr. W. R. Chitwood have been cataloged in these files. A card file (including a personal name and place name index) provides access. Each file contains an index sheet listing items in that folder.