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United States Gotoarrow.png South Carolina Gotoarrow.png Florence County

Florence County, South Carolina genealogy and family history research guide. Introduces you to county topics such as vital record births, marriages, divorces, and deaths, census, court records, deeds, maps, immigration, maps, military records, newspapers, obituaries, plantations, probate records, slaves, local archives, libraries, museums, churches, cemeteries, and Civil War records.

link=http://www.familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/South Carolina_Online_Genealogy_Records South Carolina
Online Records

Coordinates: 34.02°0′N 79.71°0′W / 34.02°N 79.71°W / 34.02; -79.71

Florence County, South Carolina
Map
Map of South Carolina highlighting Florence County
Location in the state of South Carolina
Map of the U.S. highlighting South Carolina
Location of South Carolina in the U.S.
Facts
Founded December 22, 1888
County Seat Florence
Courthouse

Contents

Quick Dates

Florence County's civil records start the following years:

Birth Marriage Death Census Land Probate
1915  1911  1915  1900  1889  1884 

County Courthouse

FlorenceSC.jpg

Florence County Courthouse
180 N. Irby St.
Florence, SC 29501-3431
Phone: 843-665-3031

Florence County Probate Court
180 N. Irby St.
Florence, SC 29501
Phone: 843-665-3085
Probate and marriage records

Florence County Clerk of Court
180 N. Irby St.
Florence, SC 29501
Phone: 843-665-3031
Court and land records

Hours:
8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday - Friday

History

The county is named after Florence Harllee.[1]

Parent County

1888--Florence County was created 22 December 1888 from Marion, Darlington, Clarendon and Williamsburg Counties.
County seat: Florence [2]

County Pronunciation

  1. Hear it spoken[3]

Boundary Changes

For animated maps illustrating South Carolina county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation South Carolina County Boundary Maps" (1682-1987) may be viewed for free at the MapofUS.org website.

Record Loss

Places / Localities

The preceding list of places includes incorporated cities and towns, unincorporated towns and communities, and place names that may have been used in family histories. Some have well-organized records and even have web sites. Some are simply social communities with no official records, but which may be referenced in small-town newspapers. The list is provided to help researchers identify localities within the county. As records or histories of these localities are identified, a page will be added for each of these place names.

Resources

Scflorence.jpg

Research Guides

African Americans

United States African Americans Gotoarrow.png South Carolina African Americans

Known plantations South Carolina Plantations:

  • Blooming Grove - Florence
  • Gregg - Mars Bluff
  • Roseville - Florence

Cemeteries

There are more than # burial grounds in the county. To view a list, see Florence County, South Carolina Cemeteries.

Census

Historical populations
Census Pop.  %±
1890 25,027
1900 28,474 13.8%
1910 35,671 25.3%
1920 50,406 41.3%
1930 61,027 21.1%
1940 70,582 15.7%
1950 49,710 −29.6%
1960 84,438 69.9%
1970 89,636 6.2%
1980 110,163 22.9%
1990 114,344 3.8%
2000 125,761 10.0%
Source: "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau.
1900, 1910, 1920, and 1930 federal population schedules of Florence County are available online. For tips on accessing census records online, see South Carolina Census. If you're having trouble finding your ancestors in online indexes, try checking printed indexes. Created by local experts familiar with the area's families, these indexes are often transcribed more accurately than online nationwide indexes.

See South Carolina Population Schedule Indexes: Fiche, Film, or Book for more information about statewide printed indexes.

1900

  • Tanner, Vernon M. 1900 Census of the United States, State of South Carolina, County of Florence. 2 vols. Hemingway, S.C.: Three Rivers Historical Society, n.d. FHL Collection 975.784 X2t 1900

Church

Episcopal Church

Before 1785, residents of what is now Florence County were served by these colonial parishes.[4]

LDS Ward and Branch Records
  • Florence

Court

DNA

DNA Double Helix.png
DNA has been collected from men claiming descent from the following Charleston County residents. FamilySearch has not independently verified the lineages of those tested.

Genealogy 

It is anticipated that this bibliography will eventually identify all known family histories published about residents of this county. Use this list to:

  • Locate publications about direct ancestors
  • Find the most updated accounts of an ancestor's family
  • Identify publications, to quote Elizabeth Shown Mills, about an ancestor's "FAN Club" [Friends, Associates, and Neighbors]

General

As of August 2010, a query for persons born in Florence, South Carolina at World Connect, produces more than 4,500 results.

Surname indexes to Leonardo Andrea's Files | Folders | Resources are available online, courtesy: The Andrea Files: South Carolina Genealogical Research. Gotoarrow.png Learn more.

Message Boards

Bibliography

  • [Chisolm] Horn, John Chisolm and Ruth Marguerite Horn Thompson. The Ancestors and Descendants of Edward Traill Horn (1850-1915) - Harriet Chisolm (1861-1946), Henry Eyster Jacobs (1844-1932) - Laura Hewes Downing (1852-1936). Huntingdon, Pa.: J.C. Horn Associates, 1989. FHL Book 929.273 H783ho.
  • [Haynes] Christensen, Celia Langford. Haynes Heritage. Yorba Linda, Calif.: C.L. Christensen, 1998. FHL Book 929.273 H333c.
  • [Keeffe] Hanna, Muriel K. Keeffe/Keefe/Keith Family of Florence and Marion Counties, South Carolina. Summerton, S.C.: M.K. Hanna, 2004. FHL 929.273 K243h
  • [LaMotte] Gault, Charles B. Portrait Album of the Family of Mr. and Mrs. Francis Beers Gault of Lake Waccamaw and Wilmington, North Carolina. Typescript. Microfilmed 1971: FHL Film 844967 Item 6.
  • [Lee] Brown, Gerald D. A Genealogy of a Lee Family Ancestry and Descendants of David Lee, Sr.: Mainly of Old Williamsburg District - Present Day Florence County, South Carolina. Hemingway, S.C.: Three Rivers Historical Society, 1995. FHL 929.273 L51br
  • [Lewis] Lewis, J.D. My Neck of the Woods: The Lewis Families of Southeastern North Carolina and Northeastern South Carolina. Baltimore, Md.: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2002. FHL Collection book 929.273 L585Ljd, CD-ROM no. 1036
  • [McCown] Clement, Louise McCown. The McCown Family of the Peedee Section of South Carolina. Columbia, S.C.: R.L. Bruan, 1966. FHL Book 929.273 M137cL.
  • [O'Cain] Hegg, Sadie Catherine Leach. The Cain Tree and Tangled Branches: A Genealogical Record. n.p.: S.L. Hegg, 1990. FHL Book 929.273 C123h.
  • [Stone] Rogers, Dorothy Lee and Louis Benjamin Rogers.Stone Works: Descendants of Old Austin Stone of the Three Rivers Area, with Related Families. Garden City, S.C.: D.L. Rogers, 2004. FHL Book 929.273 St71rd.
  • [Taylor] House, D.J., Norma House, and Danny House. Cox--Wheeler: and Related Families. West Columbia, S.C.: D.J. ; N. House, 1995. FHL Book 929.273 C839hd.

Land

Because of South Carolina’s history as an agricultural state many residents owned land. For more information about types of land records see South Carolina Land and Property.

Tracing records through South Carolina county and district changes can be difficult. In general, for earliest records begin by searching the Charleston District, then your ancestor’s residential district, then neighboring districts, then the residential county, then neighboring counties. Not all districts and counties kept records. The following chart show where you may best expect to find land records for Florence County:

Tracing Land Currently in Florence County with Parent Counties and Districts orignating in Williamsburg County [5]
Date Government Office  
1888-present Florence County
1868-1888 Williamsburg County
1804-1865 Williamsburg District
1868-1888 Marion County
1800-1868 Marion District
1769-1800 Georgetown District Records Lost
1719-1769 Charleston District
1710-1719 Proprietary Land Grants
Tracing Land Currently in Florence County with Parent Counties and Districts originating in Clarendon County [6]
Date Government Office  
1868-present Clarendon County (new)
1855-1868 Clarendon District
1801-1855 Sumter District
1800-1801 Sumter District Records Lost*
1792-1800 Salem County Records Lost*
1785-1800 Claredon County (old) Records Lost*
1769-1785 Camden District
1719-1769 Charleston District
1710-1719 Proprietary Land Grants
 

*Sumter District records destroyed by fire 27 Nov 1801

Tracing Land Currently in Florence County with Parent Counties and Districts originating in Marion County [7]
Date Government Office  
1868-present Marion County
1800-1865 Marion District
1769-1800 Georgetown District Records Lost
1719-1769 Charleston District
1710-1719 Proprietary Land Grants

*Many colonial deeds for Marion County are recorded in deed records after 1800.


Plats For State Land Grants 1784-1868

This series consists of recorded copies of plats for state land grants for the Charleston and the Columbia Series with their certificates of admeasurement or certification.  All personal names and geographic features on these plats are included in the repository's On-line Index to Plats for State Land Grants

The South Carolina Constitution of 1790 required the surveyor general to maintain offices in both the new capital at Columbia and in Charleston. The surveyor general began to use separate volumes for recording plats in his Columbia office in 1796. Before that, all plats were recorded in the set of volumes begun in Charleston in 1784. After 1796, most plats for land grants in the Upper Division of the state were recorded and filed in Columbia. The surveyor general chose to make the Columbia volumes a continuation of the state plat volumes begun in Charleston and gave the initial Columbia volume the number thirty-six to correspond with the number of the volume that had then been reached in the Charleston series. As a result, there are volumes numbered thirty-six through forty-three from each office, but the records in them are not duplicative.

Also included are the Plan Books containing Plats and Plans.

Local Histories

  • King, G. Wayne. "The Emergence of Florence, South Carolina, 1853-1890," The South Carolina Historical Magazine, Vol. 82, No. 3 (Jul., 1981), pp. 197-209. Digital version at JSTOR ($).
  • Gregg, Alexander.  History of the Old Cheraws : Containing an Account of the Aborigines of the Pedee, the First White Settlements, their Subsequent Progress, Civil Changes, the Struggle of the Revolution, and the Growth of the Country Afterward, Extending from About A.D. 1730 to 1810 with Notices of Families and Sketches of Individuals   (Baltimore, Maryland : Genealogical Pub. Co., 1967 ), 629 pages. Book at FHL 975.7 F2g 1967
  • King, G. Wayne. Rise Up So Early : a History of Florence County, Sourth Carolina (Spartanburg, South Carolina : Reprint Company, 1981), 452 pages. Includes bibliographical references and index. Book found at FHL 975.784 H2k

Maps

Military

General
  • "Mars Bluff Light Dragoons, votes," Pee Dee Queue, November 1985, Volume 9, Issue 11. Pee Dee Chapter, South Carolina Genealogical Society : Marion, SC.
  • "Mars Bluff Light Dragoons, roll, 1837," Pee Dee Queue, September 1985, Volume 9, Issue 9. Pee Dee Chapter, South Carolina Genealogical Society : Marion, SC.
Civil War, 1861-1865 

Florence County did not exist during the Civil War. It was created on 22 December 1888 from Marion, Darlington, Clarendon and Williamsburg Counties. During the Civil War, men from the area of Florence County mostly would have served in various regiments recruited in those counties. Counties were called districts during the Civil War.

  • King, G. Wayne. Rise Up So Early : a History of Florence County, Sourth Carolina (Spartanburg, South Carolina : Reprint Company, 1981), 452 pages. Includes bibliographical references and index. Civil War pages 45-58. Book found at FHL 975.784 H2k

Newspapers

Historic

The Library of Congress has identified the following historic newspapers for Florence County, South Carolina on their Chronicling America website. For publication details, including dates of publication, frequency, preceding and succeeding titles, and to find out which libraries have holdings, click on the newspaper title.


  • Ancestry.com. The Morning News Review [1924-1928] (Florence, South Carolina) [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2006. Available at Ancestry ($).
  • Ancestry.com. Florence Morning News [1929-1977] (Florence, South Carolina) [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2007. Available at Ancestry ($).
  • Ancestry.com. Morning News [1936] (Florence, South Carolina) [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2006. Available at Ancestry ($).

Current


Florence County Information Portal

Periodicals

Tap into the minds of local experts. Editors of genealogical periodicals publish unique sources that researchers new to their area may not encounter. Periodicals at various levels (county, region, and state) may carry articles useful to research in this area. For this county, see:

  • Pee Dee Queue
  • Three Rivers Chronicle

Probate

Probate is the “court procedure by which a will is proved to be valid or invalid” and encompasses “all matters and proceedings pertaining to the administration of estates, guardianships, etc.”[8] Various types of records are created throughout the probate process. These may include, wills, bonds, petitions, accounts, inventories, administrations, orders, decrees, and distributions. For further information see probate records in South Carolina.

Florence County, South Carolina estate papers, ca. 1884-1916. South Carolina, Florence County,Probate Court. FHL Film 2209321

Cheraws or Chesterfield Distict wills, 1750-1865 and abstracts from the court of common pleas, 1823-1869. By James C. Pigg.  (included today's Chesterfield, Marlboro and Darlington Counties and parts of Florence and Lee counties. These are Work Projects Administration (WPA) transcripts. FHL Book 975.763 P2pj

Taxation

Tax-related records are kept by the offices of the county Assessor, Auditor, Sheriff, and Treasurer. Taxes were levied on real and personal property and can help establish ages, residences, relationships, and the year an individual died or left the area. They can be used as substitutes for missing or destroyed land and census records.

  • South Carolina Department of Archives and History tax lists for Florence County.
Published abstracts

Holcomb and Lucas's publication includes the area that later became Florence County:

  • [1811, 1814, 1824] Holcomb, Brent H. and Silas Emmett Lucas. Some South Carolina County Records... 2 vols. Easley, S.C.: Southern Historical Press, 1976-1989. FHL Collection [Includes 1811, 1814, and 1824 tax lists for Marion District.]
  • [1930s] Grandma's Trunk, Tax Receipts, 1930s, Three Rivers Chronicle, Vol. 22, No. 2 (Summer 2001).

Vital Records

Birth, marriage, and death records were not recorded by South Carolina until the 1900s, thus leaving a lack of vital records.  Substitute records, when available, are used to obtain this information.  These substitute records including newspapers, court records have been added to this section, when applicable.

Birth

State-wide birth registration began in 1915.  For a copy of a birth from 1915 or later, contact the South Carolina Department of Health.  The Florence County Health Department also has copies but they provide only an abbreviated form with limited information.  For more information, see the South Carolina Vital Records page.

Birth Substitutes - Indexes

  • 1800s-1900s - Births, Deaths and Marriages from Timmonsville, South Carolina Newspapers: Late 19th ; 20th Century by Robert M. DeFee [9]  FHL Collection WorldCat - index
Marriage

In South Carolina, marriage licenses were not required by local governments until 1 July 1911. However, in the 1700s, the Church of England parish churches were required to record all marriages - even if the couple were not members of the denomination. Not all churches recorded these marriages and some have not survived. See South Carolina Vital Records for more information.

The Florence County probate court holds marriage licenses issued from 1 July 1911 to the present. Statewide registration of marriages began in July 1950 and the South Carolina Division of Vital Records has copies of licenses issued after 1 July 1950 through November 2009.

Newspapers are used as a substitute to locate marriage information. See South Carolina Newspapers.

Marriages and Marriage Substitutes - Indexes and Records

  • 1800s - Deaths and Marriages from 19th Century Florence, S.C. Newspapers by Robert M. DeFee [10] FHL Collection WorldCat - index
  • 1800s-1900s - Births, Deaths and Marriages from Timmonsville, South Carolina Newspapers: Late 19th ; 20th Century by Robert M. DeFee [11]  FHL Collection WorldCat - index
  • 1911-1955 - Florence County, South Carolina Marriage Registers: Whites ; Afro-Americans, ca. 1911-1955 [12] FHL Collection - records
  • 1917-1950 - Florence County, South Carolina Marriage Licenses; Affidavits, ca. 1917-1950 [13] FHL Collection - records
  • There are several online marriage indexes containing miscellaneous marriage records found in  some counties of South Carolina listed on the South Carolina Vital Records page.
Death

State-wide death registration began in 1915. For a copy of the death certificates from 1915 or later, contact the South Carolina Department of Health. The Florence County Health Department only has copies for deaths occurring in the last 5 years. For more information, see the South Carolina Vital Records page.

Deaths and Death Substitutes - Indexes and Records

Archives, Libraries, and Museums

Libraries

Florence County Library Systemconsists of a Main Library, five branch facilities, and a bookmobile.
The library systen is on Flickr, Facebook, and Twitter.

Florence - Main Library
Address:
509 South Dargan Street 
Florence, South Carolina 29506
Phone: (843) 662-8424
Fax: (843) 661-7544
Hours: Monday to Thusday 9:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., Friday to Saturday: 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Sunday 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

The E.N. Zeigler South Carolina History Room in the Florence Library contains many genealogical resources. Researchers will find one the largest genealogical collections in northeastern South Carolina. Cemetery surveys for most South Carolina counties, as well as deed, probate, and newspaper abstracts that include South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia. It is home to the Graham Collection, purchased in 1927 by the Library from the estate of Samuel A. Graham, State Senator from Williamsburg County. This unique collection of rare Americana is especially rich in South Carolina items and includes several exceedingly rare maps.
SC Room Phone: 843-413-7073/7060
SC Room email: scroom@florencelibrary.org.

Johnsonville - Doctors Bruce ; Lee Foundation Library 
Address:
242 South Georgetown Highway
Johnsonville, South Carolina 29555
Phone: (843) 386-2052
Fax: (843) 380-1302
Hours: Mon and Thu: 9:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Lake City
Address:
221 East Main Street
Lake City, South Carolina 29560
Phone: (843) 394-8071
Fax: (843) 394-1033
Hours: Monday to Wednesday 9:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., Thursday and Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Olanta - Dr. John M. Thomason Public Library
Address:
210 E. Hampton Street
Olanta, South Carolina 29114
Phone: (843) 396-4287
Fax: (843) 396-9317
Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Friday 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Tuesday and Thursday 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., Sunday 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Pamplico - Dozier M. Munn Pamplico Public Library
Address:
100 East Main Street
Pamplico, South Carolina 29583
Phone: (843) 493-5441
Fax: (843) 493-0361 MWF: 10:00 - 5:00
Hours: Tuesday and Thursday 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Saurday 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Timmonsville - Baker Memorial Public Library
Address:

298 W. Smith Street
Timmonsville, South Carolina 29161
Phone: (843) 346-2941
Fax: (843) 346-2931
Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Friday 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Tuesday and Thursday 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Satuday 9:00 a.m to 1:00 p.m.

Family History Centers

1620 Malden Dr
Florence, Florence, South Carolina, United States
Phone: 843-669-0100
Hours: T- Th ; Sat 10am-3pm,
Closed: Closed Major Holidays
Attention: whwiggins

Museums

Florence Museum
Address:

558 Spruce Street Florence SC 29501
Telephone: 843.662.3351
Email: florencemuseum@me.com
Hours: Tuesday to Saurday 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Sunday 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The Florence Museum contains primarily art and arifacts from many times and places. Among it's collections are a few historic documents

Societies - Genealogical, Historical, Lineage

Pee Dee Chapter SCGS
Old Marion District
P.O. Box 1428
Marion SC 29571-1428

Old Marion District includes Marion, Florence and Dillon Counties.

Web Sites

Wikipedia
Wikipedia has more about this subject: Florence County, South Carolina

References

  1. "List of counties in South Carolina," Wikipedia.
  2. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  3. Voice of Phillip Stalvey, resident of Myrtle Beach, S.C. (2011).
  4. "South Carolina Districts and Parishes 1770" [map] in Carolana at http://www.carolana.com/SC/Royal_Colony/sc_royal_colony_districts_parishes_1770.html (accessed 11 May 2011).
  5. Schweitzer, George K. , South Carolina Genealogical Research (Knoxville, Tennessee: s.p. 1985), 39-42, FHL book 975.7 D27s
  6. Schweitzer, George K. , South Carolina Genealogical Research (Knoxville, Tennessee: s.p. 1985), 39-42, FHL book 975.7 D27s
  7. Schweitzer, George K. , South Carolina Genealogical Research (Knoxville, Tennessee: s.p. 1985), 39-42, FHL book 975.7 D27s
  8. Henry Campbell Black, Black's Law Dictionary, 5th ed. (St. Paul, Minnesota: West Publishing Co., 1979), 1081, "probate."
  9. DeFee, Robert M., Births, Deaths and Marriages from Timmonsville, S.C. Newspapers: Late 19th 20th Century, Hartsville, SC: Old Darlington District Chapter, SCGS, c2000.
  10. DeFee, Robert M., Deaths and Marriages from 19th Century Florence, S.C. Newspapers, Hartsville, SC: Old Darlington District Chapter, SCGS, c2000.
  11. DeFee, Robert M., Births, Deaths and Marriages from Timmonsville, S.C. Newspapers: Late 19th 20th Century, Hartsville, SC: Old Darlington District Chapter, SCGS, c2000.
  12. Florence County, South Carolina Marriage Registers: Whites and Afro-Americans (one 1901 Marriage Noted), ca. 1911-1955, Salt Lake City, UT: Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 2001.
  13. South Carolina, Probate Court (Florence County), Florence County, South Carolina Marriage Licenses and Affidavits, ca. 1917-1950, Salt Lake City, UT: Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 2000
  14. Gregg, John M., Florence, S.C. Area Obituaries, [Hemingway, SC]: Three Rivers Historical Society (South Carolina), c2001.
  15. DeFee, Robert M., Deaths and Marriages from 19th Century Florence, S.C. Newspapers, Hartsville, SC: Old Darlington District Chapter, SCGS, c2000.
  16. DeFee, Robert M., Births, Deaths and Marriages from Timmonsville, S.C. Newspapers: Late 19th and 20th Century, Hartsville, SC: Old Darlington District Chapter, SCGS, c2000.
  17. DeFee, Robert M., Extracts from Florence County coroner's inquisitions, 1889-1915, Hartsville, SC: Old Darlington District Chapter, SCGS, c2001.


 

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