Miscellaneous • 126 Records • Uploaded October 29, 2021 • Data Website: www.virginiamemory.com
Coroner’s Inquisitions are investigations into the deaths of individuals who died by a sudden, violent, unnatural, or suspicious manner, or who died without medical attendance. Documents commonly found in coroner’s inquisitions include the inquisition, depositions, and summons. Information found in the inquisition include the name of the coroner, the names of the jurors, the name and age of the deceased if known, gender and race of the deceased, and when, how, and by what means the deceased came to his or her death. If the coroner knew the deceased person to be Black or a person of color, inquest should identify the person as enslaved or a free Black man or woman. If the coroner knew the deceased person to be enslaved, the inquest should include, their name, their enslaver and the enslaver’s residence. Information found in the depositions include the name of the deponent and his or her account of the circumstances that led to the death of the deceased. Unlike many other legal proceedings in antebellum Virginia, enslaved people were permitted to provide depositions for Coroners’ Inquisitions.
This source (and description) was extracted from data provided under Creative Commons from the Library of Virginia’s VIRGINIA UNTOLD: THE AFRICAN AMERICAN NARRATIVE project. The Library’s African American Narrative project aims to provide greater accessibility to pre-1865 African American history and genealogy found in the rich primary sources in its holdings.
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