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August 23, 2021

Family Bibles

Family Bibles are often kept by several generations. Specially designated blank pages, usually near the front of the book, serve as a register of important family dates. These Bibles are of great significance because they contain personal information such as dates and details about births, deaths, and weddings. This data was often not recorded anywhere else, making these Bibles all the more valuable. The state of Virginia, for example, did not begin officially gathering vital statistics on a county level until 1853. And even then, the information was sometimes lost or not kept in a central place. In 1995, the Library of Virginia began a project of digitally scanning the records from thousands of family Bibles. This digital format aids family members in locating information about their ancestors. After the Civil War, Bible publishers in the United States began issuing more elaborate versions of the family Bible. In addition to blank pages, they included space to add photos, wedding certificates, and other family information. One such Bible, issued by A. J. Holman and Company in 1882, included nearly 200 supplements to the biblical text.

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