South Carolina Archives
Conveyance Books, 1776-1785
CREATOR: Register of Mesne Conveyances.
TITLE: Conveyance books
VOLUME: 16.00 microfilm reels and 0.01 microfilm
ARRANGEMENT: Series arranged roughly chronologically in letter-designated
BIOGRAPHICAL/HISTORICAL NOTE: The South Carolina Constitution of 1776,
section 22, provided that the Register of Mesne Conveyances would "be chosen by
the General Assembly and legislative Council, Jointly by Ballot and Commissioned
by the President and Commander in Chief during good behaviour, but shall be
removed on address of the General Assembly and legislative Council." George
Sheed, Esq., was duly elected and commissioned as the first Register of Mesne
Conveyances on March 27, 1776.
The 1778 Constitution provided for "Registers of Mesne Conveyance in each
District" that were to be chosen "by the Senate and House of Representatives,
jointly, by Ballot, in the House of Representatives, and commissioned by the
Governor and Commander in Chief for two Years." Despite the latter provision for
dispersed offices, the Charleston Register of Mesne Conveyance functioned as the
state's recording officer of conveyances and deeds until 1785 when Beaufort and
Georgetown districts received registers. The county court act of 1785 provided
for the registration of deeds throughout the state.
Charleston fell to British forces during the American Revolution in May 1780.
During the British occupation of the city, which did not end until December
1782, Henry and William Rugeley served as registers, and most registrations were
by persons in the Charleston area. The first recording by a South Carolina
Register of Mesne Conveyance after the occupation is by Daniel Mazyck in
February 1783. The General Assembly elected Mazyck on February 8, 1783.
SUMMARY SCOPE NOTE: This series consists of recorded copies of leases and
releases, mortgages, leases for a specified period of years, assignments, quit
claim deeds, deeds of gift, and other forms of conveyance. Most are for real
property. Powers of attorney, bonds, plats, and occasional renunciations of
dower rights are also present. Information includes the names of the parties to
the transactions; descriptions of the property or power being conveyed; the
payment or other form of consideration for which the transfers are being made
and conditions, if any, of the transfers; dates of transactions; and names of
witnesses to the transactions.
Property descriptions for real estate usually include acreage; physical location
including natural features, boundaries, and surrounding landholders; buildings
and other improvements on the property, if any; and previous owners of the
property. The descriptions of previous owners (chains of title) sometimes
provide a history of property ownership back to the original land grant.
This series is commonly called the "Charleston Deeds." This series and its
alphabetical volume designations continue on from the earlier Conveyance Books
kept by the Public Register, 1719-1776. It is itself followed by the volumes in
the Conveyance Books series, 1785-1915, of the Charleston County Register of
Mesne Conveyances. For cataloging purposes, this series is considered to end
with Vol. 5M; Vol. 5N has been placed in the successor series.
INDEX/FINDING AID: The most complete finding aid to this series is
contained in the indexing to the published abstracts cited below under
Additional Form. These indexes include all personal names, including witnesses,
and place names and also include indexes of occupations.
Names of the principal parties to the transactions are indexed in the
repository's On-line Combined Index to Multiple Record Series, 1675-1919. These
index entries are also included in a one reel computer output microfilm (COM)
index to this series and to the Conveyance Books of the Public Register,
1719-1776, produced by the repository in 1980. The entries are also in the
Combined Alphabetical Index produced by the repository on computer output
microfilm in 1991. The numeric codes 0016 001 and 0017 001 were used to
designate this series in the computer output microfilm indexes.
The entries in these indexes produced by the repository
were derived from existing indexes.
Volumes 4T through 5B are dated only to the dates of the volumes, not the dates of individual
transactions. There is also a published index to the names of the principal
parties: An Index to Deeds of the Province and State of South Carolina,
1719-1785, and Charleston District, 1785-1800 (Easley, S.C.: Southern Historical
ADDITIONAL FORM: Abstracts available in Brent H. Holcomb, abstracter,
South Carolina Deed Abstracts, 1773-1778, Books F-4 through X-4; South Carolina
Deed Abstracts, 1776-1783, Books Y-4 through H-5; and South Carolina Deed
Abstracts, 1783-1788, Books I-5 through Z-5, published by SCMAR in 1993-1996.
REPRODUCTION NOTE: Series available in the repository only in microfilm produced by the Genealogical Society of Utah and the Charleston County
Archives and Records Center.
LOCATION OF ORIGINALS: Original volumes are at the Charleston County
Register of Mesne Conveyance Office, Charleston.
ASSOCIATED MATERIAL: South Carolina's earliest conveyances are
contained in the Conveyance Books series, 1673-1719, of the Register of the Province.
GENERAL NOTE: Some volumes filmed with Charleston County, Register of
Mesne Conveyances, Conveyance Books.
By agreement with the Genealogical Society of Utah, the repository has acquired
reproduction negative microfilm of this series and the right to produce and sell
further copies, but some of these negatives may not produce legible duplicates.
HIERARCHICAL NOTE: Forms part of the records of
the Register of Mesne Conveyances.