Accomack County Virginia

By | Jul 23, 2008

Accomack County, as it is today, was last formally established in 1671. In 1634 the Eastern Shore of Virginia was one of the original eight shires of Virginia and was name Accomac Shire after the Native American word Accawacke, which means “across the water”. The British decided to eliminate ‘heathen’ names in the New World and the Shire was renamed Northampton.

In 1663 the shire was split into two counties with the northern county assuming the original Accomac name. The county was abolished in 1670 only to be reestablished in 1671. It wasn’t until 1940 that the “k” was officially added to the spelling of the county’s name.

The very first Sheriff in what is now called the United States was William Stone, who was appointed to serve Accomack County in 1634.

Accomac is the county seat of Accomack County. In 1693 the Accomack County courthouse was moved from Onancock to a site at Matomkin. The town was established in 1786 with the name Drummond. In 1893 the town was renamed Accomac. Even today some locals will still refer to the town as Drummond.

Many of the incorporated towns of the Virginia Eastern Shore had their origins because of the railroad. Bloxom, Belle Haven, Hallwood, Keller, Melfa, Painter and Parksley are a few of those towns. Parksley is the home of th Eastern Shore Railroad Museum and in many ways the town still has the character of an 1880’s railroad town.

With as much shore line as Virginia’s Eastern Shore has, there is also a history of life on the water for Accomack County. Chincoteague is a family resort island town that is famous for the Chincoteague ponies. Each year the Volunteer Fire Company auction Wild Ponies from Assateague Island as part of their annual fundraising as well as holding an annual carnival.


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