King William County Virginia was named for William III, King of England 1689-1702. Also known as William of Orange, he was born on November 14, 1650 in The Hague, Netherlands, son of William II, Prince of Orange, and Mary, the eldest daughter of King Charles I of England. William married his English first cousin Mary Stuart, Protestant daughter of the Roman Catholic King James II, in 1677.
The King William Historical Society was organized through the interest and efforts of Mrs. L. E. Wendenburg (Sara Fox) of Aylett, Virginia. Her background as a member of the King and Queen Historical Society was especially suited to head up these efforts.
In September 1973 she brought the idea of forming the Society before the Upper King William County Woman's Club, which agreed to sponsor it.
Mrs. Wendenburg chaired a committee to develop plans for the meetings, the election of officers, and the work that could be done.
The first meeting was held in the King William Court House, Sunday, April 7, 1974 with chairman, Mrs. Wendenburg, presiding. General Edwin Cox of Aylett, president of the Virginia Historical Society, spoke on the subject: "The Contribution and the Importance of a Local Historical Society and King William County".
Since that first meeting the Society has grown to a membership of 125 people dedicated to the collection, interpretation, and preservation of the history of the county.
Our accomplishments include:
- restoration of the King William County Courthouse Wall
- restoration of the Aylett Family Burying Ground at "Fairfield"
- establishment of the King William County Museum
- documentation of county cemeteries and publication of the "King William Cemeteries" booklet
- opening of the newly restored Acquinton Church
- renovation of the old Jail into office/research/kitchenette-meeting
room areas and restoration of three existing adjoining bathrooms for courthouse and museum use
- opening of the historic Lanesville Christadelphian Church
We are also
actively involved in a number of ongoing projects including the repair
and painting of plaster on the old County Courthouse.