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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

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Six Ways to Fill Gaps in South Carolina Genealogy 1868-1870

1869 South Carolina State Census, Newberry County
Did you lose the trail of your South Carolina ancestor in 1870? If you have already tried to locate your ancestor on the 1870 US Census without success, other records exist that help to bridge the 10 year gap between the federal censuses for 1860 and 1870. You may be fortunate enough to locate your ancestor using one of the following resources:

1870 US Agricultural Census
Ancestors that had a large enough farm may be listed on the 1870 US Agricultural Census along with the number of acres they owned. A search of other farmers listed nearby may reveal other family members who were neighbors. This census is available on microfilm through the Family History Library Catalog.

1870 US Census Mortality Schedule
If your ancestor died within 12 months prior to when the 1870 US Census was taken, he or she may be listed on the 1870 Mortality Schedule.
A typical mortality schedule will list the dead person's name, age, sex, color (white, black, or mulatto), married or widowed, birthplace, month of death, occupation, and cause of death.” See United States Census Mortality Schedules.
Mortality Schedules are searchable at, and they can be ordered and viewed at a family history center. See Agriculture, Industry, Social Statistics, and Mortality Schedules in South Carolina 1850-1870.

1869 South Carolina State Census
The 1869 South Carolina State Census lists only the name of the head of household and the number of females and males according to race and age. It is available on microfilm at theSouth Carolina Department of Archives and History. Even though this census does not list the name of each family member, it does provide a clue as to where your family was living in 1869. This census is not available for Clarendon, Oconee, and Spartanburg Counties.

1869 Militia Enrollments
This database is searchable online. Enter the last name of you ancestor then enter his first name separated by a comma. His name should appear in the drop down menu as you type if he is in the database. Here is an example of a militia enrollment.
“Search for male ancestors who would have been between 18 and 45 in 1869. This repository may help to establish which county an ancestor was living. The record gives the name, age, occupation, residence, and color. Different races are listed together not separately. It is possible that this holding may also help to establish the location of the family in 1865 if they did not migrate previously.” See South Carolina 1869 Militia Enrollments.
1868 Voter’s Registration
Males who voted are listed alphabetically by county, and whites are listed separately from blacks who voted. These records are not indexed and are on microfilm at South Carolina Department of Archives and History.

1868 South Carolina State Agricultural Census
This is a state agricultural census that is on microfilm at South Carolina Department of Archives and History. If your ancestor was a farmer, look for him to be listed here. Also, you may discover other family members living nearby.


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