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Powhatan County Historical Society ...


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Organized 1975
Located in the Old Jail ~ Rear Courthouse Square
Powhatan Village
Powhatan County, Virginia
(804) 598-1139

     In 1975, a pressing need to form a county historical society was recognized by Dorothy Cosby and Helen Lawton, two retired school teachers.  "Don't you think we oughta do something about ..." Dorothy began in her own inimitable way.  They gave a luncheon at the Cosby home, Tuesday January 25, 1975, with Mr. Elie Weeks of Goochland County as a special guest to explain the details involved in getting a society started.
     Ten women from various areas of Powhatan County who had expressed an interest in forming such a society attended.  Those present were Mesdames C. N. Elam, Charles Cella, Julian Binford, T. G. West, Louis Allen, J. G. Palmore, Taylor Smith, E. P. Hicks, C. F. Noble, and Miss Elizabeth Gills.
     "The purpose of organizing a historical society is to preserve and present the history of Powhatan County.  It is hoped that through the acquisition of manuscripts, printed source materials, and artifacts relating to the county's history, we can keep alive the county's inspiring history."  These were the first goals set by the society.
     Under Dorothy Cosby's leadership, the Society worked with the Bicentennial Commission in preparing for both the Bicentennial celebration held in June 1976 and the celebration of the 200th anniversary of Powhatan County, 1977.  The Society's main project was the sale of historical plates designed by Mrs. Mary Jane Stokes, a local artist.  Proceeds from the sale helped finance the writing of a History of Powhatan County.
     Between 1977-1980, the Society grew under the leadership of Second Vice-President Helen Lawton.  The Society's chief interest was helping Mr. Richard Couture, author, to complete his research and writing of the County's history.
     Highlights of the first years include the Bronze Plaque placed at Derwent, Robert E. Lee's post-war sanctuary; the printing of three calendars of homes, churches, and scenes in Powhatan for the Bicentennial; securing a Coat-of-Arms; and sponsoring many illustrious guest speakers at the Society's meetings.