Monday, June 24, 2019

Dutch Fork Lutheran Church Records

The Dutch Fork area snuggled in the South Carolina Midlands is a pocket community around the intersection of the Saluda and Broad Rivers. It includes Newberry, Richland and Lexington Counties.  The community is proud of its’ German heritage and many local families are descendants of the original German pioneers.

In addition to its’ unique folklore, cooking and massive family trees (like Shealy, Shull and Wessinger) a strong Lutheran Church presence is one of the legacies left by the original Germans immigrants. The University of South Carolina digitized a group of Lutheran church records from this community that is a genealogical treasure trove.  The records feature churches in Chapin, Gilbert, Irmo, Leesville, Lexington, Little Mountain, Prosperity, Swansea and West Columbia. 

The records begin in the late nineteenth century and extend beyond the mid-twentieth century.  Ledgers include member rolls, baptisms, marriages, funerals, etc. While they are not transcribed they are readable and if you have family in this area you probably want to read them all anyway.  It was a tight-knit community and they married within their religion.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

New resources and updates

Hi folks,

Transcribing SC resources has kept our department pretty busy lately.  We have been pushing to finish transcribing the SC 1868 Voter Registration census and we are nearly there.  Some wonderful volunteers stepped up at the last minute to help speed things along. Right now only Orangeburg and Charleston remain unfinished and they will be available in the next month. All other counties are transcribed and keyword searchable.

The 1917 SC birth certificates are finally up on the SC Electronic Records Archive (SCERA). Remember that SCERA is available on the South Carolina Archives site. It differs from the Online Records Index because the original files were obtained electronically.  The Online Record Index files were scanned from the primary documents.

For Richland County researchers we finished transcribing the P. H. Lachicotte ledger. This is a ledger of transactions from P. H. Lachicotte Company, jewelers located on Main Street, and it covers September 1883-September 1895.  Our hope is this resource will supplement the Columbia city directories that are so “gappy” for the period following Reconstruction. The ledger does list women and African Americans and lots of watches!!

Thank you all for keeping the statistics high on the Richland Library Digital Collection, Indexes of Local History and Genealogy page.  It is consistently in our top ten collections.  The high statistics help us justify the time we spend indexing and transcribing records.  BTW, the years 1879 and 1880 were recently added to the Richland County Treasurer’s Tax Duplicate Records index.

Keep searching!

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Civilian Conservation Corps

Saturday mornings can be very quiet in the library but it gives me the chance to catch up on some online learning opportunities. Consuming my early morning learning time today is the National Archive 2018 Virtual Genealogy Fair. It is a luxury to be able to listen to the nearly 6 hours of instruction about National Archive resources and record groups while working on a mindless inventory project.

My favorite session this year navigated through records held in the Still Picture unit that document Civilian Conservation Corp camps and activities. The online session provided a list of series that contain CCC photographs and included handouts. They also directed me to a 2015 session about the CCC Personnel Records.

The Civilian Conservation Corps created 16 SC State Parks. Before the CCC came to South Carolina there were no SC state parks! How’s that for a bit of trivia? According to the SC Encyclopedia the SC CCC employed 49,000 between 1933-1942. While this is a federal project and the records are at the National Archive in Washington, DC there are some records worth looking at in South Carolina.

The catalogs at USC Caroliniana Library and the South Carolina Historical Society both show SC CCC camp newspapers from around the state…lots of them! I shared a few below but there are really too many to share, check their catalogs.

The South Carolina State Archive has a treasure trove of records from the State Forestry Commission and the SC Dept. of Social Services pertaining to the CCC in South Carolina Below I’ve listed a few series that should be valuable to family historians.

National Archives

· NARA Virtual Genealogy Fairs

2018: How to search for photographs that document CC camps and activities.

2015: Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Personnel Records

University of South Carolina Caroliniana Library/SCHS

· The Civilian Conservation Corps as a social resource in South Carolina by Edna Kennerly, 1940 (Thesis).
· Sample of CCC camp newspapers at Caroliniana:

Civilian Conservation, CCC Co.4475 (Chester, SC)

The bugle, CCC Co. 4468 (Barnwell, SC)

Indian speaks, CCC Co. 4469 (Richland County, SC)

The Oconee mountaineer (Walhalla, SC)

The terrace builder, CCC Co. 3451 (Laurens, SC)

Ambassador and The General, CCC Co. 4471 (Lee County, SC)

Hi-de-hi-de-ho, CCC Co.4487 (Anderson, SC)

Hill side news, CCC Co. 4470 (Montmorenci, SC)

See also:

· William Lee Davis papers. Includes CCC photo album from Abbeville, SC.

South Carolina State Archives

· State Commission of Forestry

Series: “S 162004” includes job applications.

“S 162005” includes photographs.

· South Carolina Dept. of Social Services

Series: “S 214006” includes personnel data cards.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Richland County Tax Duplicate records

One way to make historic records more accessible is to index the information. An index is a list of names and/or subjects that leads the user to the full text. The most common index is found in the back of a book leading the searcher to a page with more detailed information.

We recently indexed the Richland County Tax Duplicate books. The index contains only the taxpayer name  but provides a page number to the microfilmed record for more information.  The series begins in 1876. We have indexed 1876 and 1877 (1878 is missing and we are working on 1879).  These are great years because they fall during the Reconstruction Government when records are scarce.  

The tax duplicate records are a schedule of all taxable real and personal property in Richland County.  Information generally includes the name, number, and residence/post office address of the taxpayer; date of tax payment; number of acres, lots, buildings, and value of all taxable real property; value of all taxable personal property; total value of all taxable property; total tax; poll tax; capitation road tax; dog tax, showing number of dogs; total for collection; total tax and penalty; execution turned over to the sheriff; date paid; nulla bona executions and remarks. Recorded information varies from year to year.

Unfortunately the years indexed so far do not include addresses but they are still a valuable resource for identifying county and city residents. While race was not recorded we know that African American were paying taxes during this time period and, therefore, listed in the series.

The complete series on microfilm is available at the South Carolina Department of Archives and History (series number L 40082). At Richland Library we have  microfilm for the years we are indexing.  

You can search all of our indexes from the Indexes of Local History and Genealogy landing page.

If you are interested in learning more about our indexing projects check the book Genealogy and the Librarian edited by Carol Smallwood.  A chapter about our documentary editing projects is included.

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Accounts Audited of Claims growing out of the Revolutionary War.

The South Carolina State Archives has recently added new digital content to a major collection in their online index. Accounts audited of claims growing out of the Revolution in South Carolina, 1775-1856 (S 108092) was an index only collection but the digital images are now available in the online index.  The series is organized by last name, first name and includes documents presented by Americans who served in the Revolutionary War to support their pension claims. See the record description link above for specific details.

The documents are also abstracted in the classic Roster of South Carolina Patriots in the American Revolution by Bobby Gilmer Ross.  However, the original documents contain genealogical information not abstracted in Dr. Moss’s book because the abstracts were intended as an accounting of South Carolina’s Revolutionary soldiers, not a genealogical tool.  This leaves lots genealogical material to be uncovered in the original documents!

Thursday, March 1, 2018

SC Birth certificates update

Looks like 1916 birth certificates are finally up!  I haven't tested it yet but it is posted.

South Carolina Genealogy: exploring online resources

The SC State Library is pleased to offer a workshop titled “South Carolina Genealogy: exploring online resources” taught by Debbie Bloom, Manager of the Walker Local and Family History Center at the Richland Library on May 9, 2018, from 10:00 am to 11:30 am at the SC State Library.  Attendees will explore databases, indexes, and digital content that South Carolina libraries and other public institutions are offering researchers.  All are welcome to attend.

Update: Here is a link to this webinar.