The Virginia Conference archivist is Stephanie Davis, (804) 521-1132 firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have a research question or would like to make an appointment to visit the Archives, please call or email first. Contributions of suitable records and memorabilia are welcomed, but advanced notice is required before bringing materials to the Conference Center. Donors will be asked to sign a Certificate of Gift agreement.
Located on the second floor of the Virginia United Methodist Center in Glen Allen, Virginia, the Virginia Conference Archives contains a rich treasury of artifacts and records from the history of the Conference, its churches and its people. The current Virginia Conference of The United Methodist Church is the successor to seven denominations and 38 conferences. Preserving the record of this historic conference is the task of the Conference Archives.
A museum collection which may be viewed near the entrance to the building includes historic items such as the pine pulpit used in the first conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, in Petersburg, May 1846. Also on exhibit there is a mantel from “Church Hill,” the Fairfax County home of William and Ann Adams, whose home was an early meetinghouse and often welcomed Francis Asbury.
The CD, “The Ministerial Heritage of the Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church,” is for sale in the Archives. Created by Rev. Stephen E. Bradley, Jr., this database of pastoral records is a valuable research resource.
Guidelines for Historians and Managing Records
Types of items the Archives contains
Please contact the Archivist for precise holdings information:
Records of Conference Agencies
Clergy memoirs, pastoral records, and photos
Conference Journals and Minutes
The Virginia Advocate
The Richmond Christian Advocate
The Christian Advocate
Closed church records
Information about Virginia United Methodist colleges
Special Collections: Collins Denny, Jean Craig, and Jacob Peyton Simpson.
Various Artifacts and pictures
The Virginia Conference is unquestionably the most complex and the most richly historic of any conference in Methodism. After all, the current Virginia Conference of The United Methodist Church is the successor to seven denominations and 38 conferences. Preserving the record of this historic conference is the task of the Conference Archives, housed in the Virginia Conference Center.
That record includes the minutes of the predecessor conferences — admittedly with some gaps — and the current Virginia Conference. In fact, the archives collection includes the leather-bound, handwritten minutes of the first 10 conferences of American Methodism — 1773 to 1783.
A museum collection which may be viewed near the entrance to the building includes historic items such as the pine pulpit used in the first conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, in Petersburg, May 1846. Also on exhibit there is a mantel from “Church Hill,” the Fairfax County home of William and Ann Adams, whose home was an early meetinghouse and often welcomed Francis Asbury. Also housed in the archives are the records of conference agencies, clergy, and closed churches, and several special collections, including a significant collection inherited from the United Methodist Historical Society of Northern Virginia.
Because the archives space in the former conference office building on West Broad Street in Richmond was severely cramped and inadequate, a sizable backlog of processing now confronts the archives director. Volunteers are welcome to assist.
Conference Archives is creating a database of pastoral records for everyone who has served in full connection within the bounds of the present Virginia Conference. Stephen E. Bradley Jr., pastor at Lawrenceville, is building this valuable resource. The archives collection offers a helpful research facility for genealogists and church historians. The collection includes a rich treasury of artifacts from the history of the conference, its churches, and its people.
Since its founding in 1932, the Conference Historical Society has encouraged individuals and churches to preserve their historic artifacts and, where appropriate, to place them in the Conference Archives. The Conference Archives welcomes contributions of suitable records and memorabilia, but please inquire in advance before bringing materials to the Conference Center. Donors will be asked to sign a gift agreement.
The archives are housed in a secure, spacious, and well-appointed facility where the valuable records of the conference are maintained in a controlled environment for the use of the conference and its staff and members. Contact Conference Archives at (804) 521-1100 or 1-800-768-6040, ext. 132.
Related Boards and Commissions:
General Commission on Archives and History
SEJ Historical Society
SEJ Heritage Center
General Commission on Archives and History
Baltimore-Washington Conference Archives
Holston Conference Archives
West Virginia Conference Archives
Library of Virginia
Virginia Historical Society
Valentine Richmond History Center