Cocke Family

A Guide to the Cocke Family Papers, 1794–1981
Call Number Mss1 C6458d FA2

(Part of the Virginia Heritage: Guides to Manuscripts & Archival Collections in Virginia)

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Main Entry

Cocke family


Papers, 1794–1981 (bulk 1883–1964)


2,950 (ca.) items

Biographical Note

Represented are Thomas Lewis Preston (1781–1812) of Rockbridge County, Va.; his daughter, Elizabeth Randolph (Preston) Cocke (1808–1889) of Powhatan County, Va.; her son, John Preston Cocke (1845–1917) of Richmond, Va.; and his daughter, Elizabeth Preston Cocke (1891–1981) of Richmond.

Scope Note

Collection contains the papers of four generations of members of the Preston and Cocke families and provides insights into the dynamics of family life in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, as well as information on the civic and benevolent activities of a single woman in the first half of the twentieth century. The papers, 1794–1812, of Thomas Lewis Preston of Rockbridge County, Va., include correspondence with siblings and information on the Ann Smith Academy (for girls). The papers, 1893–1914, of his daughter, Elizabeth Randolph (Preston) Cocke, concern the sale of land in Kentucky by her children. The papers of her son, John Preston Cocke, a Richmond, Va., attorney, contain ten memoranda books, a small amount of personal correspondence with his wife and daughters, and information compiled for a history of Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond.

The papers, 1903–1981, of Cocke's daughter, Elizabeth Preston Cocke, also of Richmond, contain publications, personal correspondence, and administrative records documenting her activities in the Girls' Auxiliary of the Instructive Visiting Nurse Association in Richmond, 1913–1924; the Reconstructive Aids at Parker Hill Hospital in Boston; the Junior League of Richmond, 1925–1935; the Richmond Volunteer Services Bureau and the Richmond Aircraft Warning Filter System during World War II; and among the United World Federalists, 1948–1956. Her correspondence includes letters from friends, family members, and disabled soldiers. There are also six travel diaries, including one of a trip to California made at the age of twelve.


Gift of Mrs. James E. Heslep, Richmond, Va., and others in 1981.