Hanover County was formed on November 26, 1720 by "An Act for Dividing New Kent County." Hanover County was named in honor of King George I, the first British monarch from the House of Hanover, who ruled over Great Britain and its colonies from 1714 to 1727.

Hanover County was the birthplace and a residence of Patrick Henry, whose concluding argument in the Parsons' Cause case of 1763 (held in the Historic Hanover Court House) may be said to have been the beginning of the American Revolution in Virginia, and made Hanover County a focal point in the Revolutionary movement.

The Hanover Tavern, Polegreen Church and Rural Plains are a few of the many Hanover landmarks that predate the Revolution, and the battles of Gaines' Mill, Totopotomoy Creek and Cold Harbor (among others) were fought in Hanover County during the Civil War.

•NEW MEMBERS• Join the Hanover County Historical Society at the Individual level for two years and receive a free copy of Nature's Bounty, Nation's Glory! Visit our Membership page for details.

The Hanover County Historical Society was first organized on April 2, 1967. Hugh Campbell, the Society's first President and devoted historian, passed away on April 20. We are grateful for what he did to start us on our mission to preserve and promote Hanover County's rich history and heritage.

Click here to read a moving tribute from Hugh's family.
Click here to see a picture from 2017, of Hugh and eight other HCHS presidents.

Historic Courthouse Tours

Hanover County's Historic Courthouse is open for free tours once a month, from 10am 'til 2pm. Society Docents will be available to tell the story of this icon of American history, and under most circumstances will be happy to also give tours of the Old Stone Jail, which is next to the courthouse.

If you're interested in a tour for your group or family on a different day, please reach out to us on our Contact page and we'll work with you!
2024 Courthouse Tour Dates

Thursday, June 13
Thursday, July 11


Thursday, August 8
Thursday, September 9
Thursday, October 10
Thursday, November 14


Won't you join us?


The HCHS Online Store Is OPEN!
Visit our ONLINE STORE to pay for Membership, purchase tickets to Society events, and purchase many of the Society's publications!

Please visit our Publications page for a list of all available Society publications, and information about how they can be purchased.



This year our Annual Gala will be held at historic
LOMBARDY(circa 1790)
on Tuesday, September 10!

More info coming soon!
2021 video of Judge David B. Caddell Jr and the late Patrick H. Bynum Jr. discussing a local murder trial which led to a precedent-setting ruling by the Supreme Court of Virginia and a landmark ruling by the U. S. Supreme Court. You can view the film by clicking here. To see our Bulletin article (No. 104, Autumn 2021) for a synopsis of the case, click here.

Two articles that remember the antebellum Doswell dynasty of racehorse production:


Click here to download a PDF version of the Hanover County Historical Society's March, 2024 issue of Highlights!
Check out the Hanover County Historical Society's Facebook page, always up to date with the latest info!