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Fairfax County History

Virginia Room Research

Fairfax Herald Has Been Digitized!

Issues of the Fairfax Herald are now publicly accessible and searchable for the first time ever! Over the last several months, Fairfax County Public Library’s Virginia Room has partnered with the Library of Virginia to digitize the Fairfax Herald, which at one time was Fairfax County’s longest running newspaper. In January 2022, all Herald issues from 1886-1964 are now available for searching on Virginia Chronicle, the Library of Virginia's online historical archive of state newspapers. To search for historical news in other Fairfax-area newspapers, check out our Historic Newspaper Index.

 Search the Fairfax Herald! 

Fairfax County History

Formed in 1742, Fairfax County has a long and fruitful history. The Virginia Room, located on the second floor of the City of Fairfax Regional Library, collects, preserves, and makes accessible local history resources. Researchers can find historical information on Fairfax County individuals, locations, and events. This Local History page serves as a guide to some of our local history resources which include:

  • Photographs
  • Yearbooks
  • Local Newspapers
  • Subject Files
  • Archival Collections

This Guide Is Intended For:

  • Researchers interested in the history of their neighborhood
  • Genealogists seeking their Fairfax County ancestors
  • Historians investigating histories of local buildings
  • School alumni searching for old yearbooks
  • Anyone curious about Fairfax County’s history

Questions? Email the Virginia Room:

Local History Library Events

Burke Historical Society Presents: Oakton, VA During the American Civil War Years

Burke Historical Society Lecture Series. Presentation by Jim Lewis Oakton, known as Flint Hill during the American Civil War, was a small village surrounded by a number of quiet farms. As sleepy …

Sunday, May 28, 2023
3:00pm - 4:30pm
Pohick Meeting Room 1, Pohick Meeting Room 2, Pohick Meeting Room 1, Pohick Meeting Room 2
History/Culture Presentation/Performance

Fairfax County History Book Club

Join the Virginia Room as they read the county's definitive history book Fairfax County, Virginia A History. Published in 1978 with nearly 800 pages and 150 illustrations, we will virtually meet b…

Tuesday, May 30, 2023
7:00pm - 9:00pm
Book Discussion

Do Ask, Do Tell: The History of LGBTQ+ Military Service

Throughout much of American history, LGBTQ+ service members had to hide their identities in order to serve in the military. Join Cathy Marcello for a presentation on the history of LGBTQ+ military ser…

Sunday, Jun 4, 2023
3:00pm - 4:00pm
Pohick Meeting Room 1, Pohick Meeting Room 2, Pohick Meeting Room 1, Pohick Meeting Room 2

New Guide to Black History Materials in the Virginia Room

The Virginia Room has created a new guide to research materials relating to Black history in Fairfax County, Virginia. While this guide aims to offer a robust selection of available resources, it is not exhaustive. Included are books, school yearbooks, oral histories, manuscript collections, photographs, and subject files available in the Virginia Room on Black history. This guide will be periodically updated with additional resources.

 Fairfax County Black History Resources 

Virginia Room COVID-19 Project

Beginning in April 2020, the Virginia Room began collecting digital submissions from Fairfax County residents describing their experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic. About 100 community members contributed approximately 300 items such as photographs, journal entries, poems, and artwork. A small sample of this collection is available for viewing through the FCPL’s Biblioboard Creator platform.

 Fairfax County Public Library COVID-19 Collecting Project 

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