South Carolina Genealogy Resources

My husband has several families with South Carolina ties – the Broadways, Hambys and Woodruffs – so I’ve had to do some digging in the Palmetto state.

Since resources like vital records are often in short supply in South Carolina, I decided it was time to compile the beginnings of a reference list for genealogical research there.

First, be sure to check any local town library or historical society where your ancestors lived. Be sure to inquire about any genealogical collections including any vertical file holdings.

Avery Research Center – College of Charleston collections

Beaufort County Library – There is an online searchable index covering local area obituaries dating back to 1862.

The Charleston Archive

Charleston County RMC Archival Room

Chronicling America at the Library of Congress – many links to historical South Carolina newspapers

FamilySearch – There is a lengthy list of links to all kinds of South Carolina records accessible on line. Some are free, while others are links to paid sites, so noted with $ sign.

FamilySearch Wiki on South Carolina research

Greenville Historical Society – There is an online browseable catalog, but items must be viewed in person.

Gutenberg Project EBook – South Carolina Slave Narratives

Heritage Library/History and Ancestry Research Center

Horry County Archives Center

Horry County Historical Society

Huguenot Society of South Carolina

IAAM Center for Family History

Lexington County Probate Court Online Indexes

Low Country Digital Library – College of Charleston

Piedmont Historical Society

Richland Library – Main library is in Charleston

Schalene Dagutis’s Slave Name Roll Project

South Carolina Department of Archives and History – There are links to multiple online databases.

South Carolina Digital Library

South Carolina GenWeb – Resources are organized by county and maintained by volunteers. Some counties are rich with records, while others are sparse.

South Carolina Historical and Genealogical Magazine – on JSTOR

South Carolina Historical Society

South Carolina Society Sons of the American Revolution – This site has a number of links to other pertinent SC websites.

South Caroliniana Library at the University of South Carolina

University of South Carolina Digital Collections

If you have early Spartanburg County families, a book that I found incredibly handy is Spartanburg County – District, South Carolina, Deed Abstracts, Book A-T 1785-1827 by Albert Bruce Pruitt, published in 1998. It is found on the shelves of many genealogical libraries. It’s also available on Amazon.

Be sure to contact any local public library in a town where your family lived to ask about vertical files and/or any local genealogical information that might be in the collection.

Unfortunately, this list isn’t very long, which reflects the difficulty in locating genealogical documents. However, the links above are a great starting place and you might be pleasantly surprised. Some sites have a large number of resources.

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