In 2010 a Greenbrier County, West Virginia resident was plowing his garden and unearthed a round metal object, probably brass. It was somewhat weathered, with some stains that a collector indicated that it might have been through a fire. It was a seal of the type used to emboss official papers, widely used in the 19th century.
The lettering on the front of the seal reads “Circuit Court, Greenbrier County, Va.” (West Virginia didn’t achieve statehood until June 20, 1863.) Stamped on the reverse is “Wagner, York, Pa.”
The seal ended up with the Greenbrier Historical Society, whose staff recently contacted York County Heritage Trust for more information on our nationally known engraver, die sinker and creator of seals, William Wagner. YCHT has a large file on Wagner, as well as some of his original seals and casts of seals, plates for engraving money and advertisements and also his book of original watercolors depicting York in 1830. Director of Library and Archives Lila Fourhman-Shaull was able to provide a good bit of information on him for the West Virginians.
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