South Carolina Archives Series Description
South Carolina Will Transcripts, 1782-1868 (Microcopy No. 9)
CALL NUMBER: S 108093
CREATOR: Dept. of Archives and History. Archives and
A will is the legal expression of an
individual's wishes as to the distribution of his
property after his death. Information in a
typical will includes the names of testator,
legatees, executor(s), and witnesses; family and
other relationships of the testator; testator's
wishes as to the distribution of his property; and
the nature of the real and personal property to be
distributed. As these are all antebellum wills,
they will often contain the names of slaves in
family or apparent family groupings. In many
cases, the transcripts also provide citations for
the estate packet in which the will is housed and
for the recorded copy of the will in manuscript
estate record books or will books. These
citations have been edited and amplified in the document descriptions in the
repository's On-line Index, and the obsolete citations for Spartanburg estate
packets have been omitted there.
Although the end date of the title of this
microfilm publication is 1868, only a small
portion of the transcripts date beyond circa 1855.
For this reason, the On-line Records Index
lists the end date of the series as 1855.
The dates when wills were proved or recorded have been entered in the On - Line Index even when they are not present in the typescripts. Wills are sometimes written many years before a person dies. Therefore the dates when the wills were written have not been used except for most of the entries in Vol. 3 of the Abbeville District will transcripts, 1839 - 1855, where dates of proof or recording could not be easily determined.
A consolidated index to decedents (only) is
available on roll 1 of the microcopy and in
manuscript in the repository's Reference Room. A
printed introductory pamphlet that accompanies the
microcopy provides a more detailed description of
the transcripts and the project that created them.
An every-name index produced by the repository on
three reels of computer output microfilm (COM) in 1991
A county-by-county decedent index has been
published: Mrs. John D. Rogers, Indexes to the
County Wills of South Carolina (Washington: Martha
Lou Houston, 1946; reprinted, Baltimore:
Genealogical Publishing Co., 1964 & 1975).
REPRODUCTION NOTE: Entire series available in microfilm from this