Calhoun County, South Carolina Genealogy

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Guide to Calhoun County, South Carolina ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, and military records.

County Facts
County seat: St. Matthews
Organized: February 14, 1908[1]
Parent County(s): Lexington, Orangeburg[2]
Neighboring Counties
Clarendon  • Lexington  • Orangeburg  • Richland  • Sumter
See County Maps
South Carolina, Calhoun County Courthouse.png
Location Map

County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

The county is named for John C. Calhoun, the former U.S. Vice-President, Senator, Representative and cabinet member from South Carolina. The County is located in the center area of the state.[3]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Calhoun County Courthouse
102 Courthouse Drive
St Matthews, SC 29135-1452
Telephone: 803-874-2435
Calhoun County Website

County Pronunciation
Hear it spoken.[4]

Calhoun County, South Carolina Record Dates[edit | edit source]

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[5]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1915 1911 1915 1908 1908 1908 1790
*Statewide registration for births and deaths began in 1915. General compliance by 1918.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

Populated Places[edit | edit source]

For a complete list of populated places, including small neighborhoods and suburbs, visit HomeTown Locator. The following are the most historically and genealogically relevant populated places in this county:[8]

Unincorporated communities

History Timeline[edit | edit source]

The county is named after John C. Calhoun, who served as Vice President of the United States under both John Quincy Adams and Andrew Jackson as well as secretary of state and of war and senator." [9] Amelia Township, an original eighteenth-century settlement and part of the Royal Period of South Carolina, was situated in what is now Calhoun County. Learn more about the history of Calhoun County from the South Carolina State Library or from

Resources[edit | edit source]

Bible Records[edit | edit source]

Biographies[edit | edit source]

Business, Commerce, and Occupations[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries of Calhoun County, South Carolina online and in print
Tombstone Transcriptions Online
Tombstone Transcriptions in Print (Often more complete)
List of Cemeteries in the County
See South Carolina Cemeteries for more information.

Census Records[edit | edit source]

For all existing and online Federal population schedules of South Carolina, see South Carolina Census. See also USGenWeb Census Project, South Carolina, including links to transcribed files.


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1910 16,634
1920 18,384 10.5%
1930 16,707 −9.1%
1940 16,229 −2.9%
1950 14,753 −9.1%
1960 12,256 −16.9%
1970 10,780 −12.0%
1980 12,206 13.2%
1990 12,763 4.6%
2000 15,185 19.0%
2010 15,175 −0.1%
Source: "".
  • 1910, 1920, and 1930 federal population schedules of Calhoun 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.

Church Records[edit | edit source]

Calhoun County Churches identifies dozens of churches in the area, courtesy: South Carolina Genealogical Society.

List of Churches and Church Parishes

Court Records[edit | edit source]

Directories[edit | edit source]

Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups[edit | edit source]

African Americans
United States African Americans Gotoarrow.png African American Resources for South Carolina
Known plantations, South Carolina Plantations

Funeral Homes[edit | edit source]

Genealogies[edit | edit source]


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


  • Caver - Caver, Larry Eugene. The Caver Family of North America. Birmingham, Ala.: Caver Press, 1990. FHL Book 929.273 C315cL.
  • Felder - Felder, Rice A. and Feller Publishing Fund. Descendants of James Addison Felder and Flavilla Shuler of Orangeburg County, South Carolina. Columbia, S.C.: Felder Publishing Fund, 1980. FHL Book 929.273 F332f.
  • King - King, Kermitt Sifley. The Kings of Calhoun County, Amelia Township. Columbia, S.C.: K.S. King, 1992. FHL Book 929.273 K58kin.
  • Snelgrove - Snelgrove, Price Charles. Freeman Snelgrove and Some of His Descendants. Alford, Fla.: P.C. Snelgrove, 1993. FHL Book 929.273 Sn27sp.
  • Wise - Bauer, William Rudolph. Reconstruction of the Genealogy of the Wise Family of the Congarees. Columbia, S.C.: W.R. Bauer, 2001. FHL 929.273 W754b

Guardianship[edit | edit source]

Land and Property Records[edit | edit source]

Because South Carolina was an agricultural state, many residents owned land. For earliest records, search 1) Charleston District, 2) your ancestor’s residential district, 3) neighboring districts, 4) the residential county, 5) neighboring counties. Not all districts and counties kept records. See also South Carolina Land and Property.

Online Land Indexes and Records
The following chart shows where you may best expect to find land records.

Tracing Land Currently in Calhoun County with Parent Counties and Districts [10]
Date Government Office
1908-Present Calhoun County
1868-1908 Orangeburg County
1839-1908 Lexington County
1865-1868 Orangeburg District
1785-1865 Orangeburg District Records Lost*
1785-1839 Records Lost* **
1710-1785 Charleston District
1670-1710 Proprietary Land Grants
  • Some Orangeburg District deeds were recorded in Charleston District and were not destroyed
    ** Orangeburg District, Lexington District, Orangeburg County, and Lewisburg County records destroyed by fire in 1865. Only Lexington County deeds after 1839 survive.
  • Plats For State Land Grants 1784-1868 For information about the State Land Grants, see State Land Grants

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

  • Linder, Suzanne Cameron. Historical Atlas of the Rice Plantations of the ACE River Basin, 1860 (Columbia, South Carolina: S.C. Dept. of Archives and History, c1995 ), 684 pages. The plantations were in Beaufort, Colleton & Charleston counties. WorldCat 34264321, FHL 975.79 R2L

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Lexington CountyRichland CountySumter CountyClarendon CountyOrangeburg CountySC CALHOUN.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Migration[edit | edit source]

Early migration routes to and from Calhoun County for European settlers included: [11]

Military Records[edit | edit source]

Civil War

Regiments Calhoun County did not exist during the Civil War. It was created in 1908 from Lexington and Orangeburg Counties. During the Civil War, men from the area of Calhoun County mostly would have served in various regiments recruited in those counties. Counties were called districts during the Civil War. The following regiment apparently had men from the area of present day Calhoun County:

- 1st Regiment, South Carolina Infantry (Butler's) (1st Regulars), Company A (also called Company B and Beauregard Artillery)
- 20th Regiment, South Carolina Infantry

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

The Library of Congress has identified the following historic newspapers for Calhoun 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.

Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Other Records[edit | edit source]

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

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 more information and links, see South Carolina Periodicals.

See: Periodicals for description.

  • South Carolina Magazine of Ancestral Research

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

Various types of records are created throughout the probate process of settling estates and property, usually after death. These may include, wills, bonds, petitions, accounts, inventories, administrations, orders, decrees, and distributions. For further information see probate records in South Carolina Probate Records.

Online Probate Indexes and Records

School Records[edit | edit source]

Social Security Records[edit | edit source]

Tax Records[edit | edit source]

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, and relationships. See South Carolina Taxation for online resources and suggestions.

Online Tax Indexes and Records

  • South Carolina Department of Archives and History tax lists for Calhoun County.

Published abstracts

  • 1818 St. Matthews Tax List, 1818, South Carolina Magazine of Ancestral Research, Vol. 1, No. 3 (Summer 1973); Vol. 1, No. 4 (Fall 1973).

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Birth, marriage, and death records were not recorded by South Carolina until the 1900s, thus leaving a lack of vital records created by Civil authorities. See South Carolina Vital Records for online resources and suggestions.

Birth[edit | edit source]

State-wide birth registration did not begin until 1915. For records after 1915, see the South Carolina Vital Records page.

Marriage[edit | edit source]

In South Carolina, Probate Courts issued and still keep marriage licenses from 1 July 1911 to the present. Licenses were not required before 1911. 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. Statewide registration of marriages started in July, 1950. See South Carolina Vital Records for indexes and more information.
The Calhoun 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 - Indexes and images

  • 1911-1972 Calhoun County, South Carolina Marriage Register, 1911-1972 [12] FHL film 2317644 - index
  • 1911-1950 - Calhoun County, South Carolina Marriage Licenses, ca. 1911-1950 [13] FHL films - 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[edit | edit source]

State-wide death registration began in 1915. For information and online records, see the South Carolina Vital Records page.

Deaths - Indexes and Records

Divorce[edit | edit source]

Research Facilities[edit | edit source]

Archives[edit | edit source]

Listed below are archives in Calhoun County. For state-wide library facilities, see South Carolina Archives and Libraries.

Family History Centers[edit | edit source]

Family History Center and Affiliate Library Locator map - search for local Family History Centers or Affiliate Libraries

  • Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance, free access to center-only databases, and to premium genealogical websites.
  • FamilySearch Affiliate Libraries have access to most center-only databases, but may not always have full services normally provided by a family history center.

Local Centers and Affiliate Libraries

Libraries[edit | edit source]

Listed below are libraries in Calhoun County. For state-wide library facilities, see South Carolina Archives and Libraries.

  • Calhoun County Library
    900 FR Huff Dr,
    St. Matthews, SC 29135
    877-887-5588 - Toll Free; 803-874-3389

Museums[edit | edit source]

This museum is county-run rather than by a society.

  • Calhoun County Museum
    313 Butler Street
    St. Matthews, SC 29135
    Telephone: (803) 874 - 3964
    Hours of Operation: Tuesday to Friday - 9:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M.
    The Archive:
    The genealogy materials are housed in the museum's archive. Among other materials, there are African American books; cemetery books; Church books, county books; court record books; Jewish history; marriage, death and will books, native American books, South Carolina Civil War, and more. Categories and titles of the Archive's holdings are available at "The Archive" link above.
    They will assist with any genealogical or historical research, but please call ahead to set up an appointmentWebsite

Societies[edit | edit source]

Listed below are societies in Calhoun County. For state-wide genealogical societies, see South Carolina Societies.

Websites[edit | edit source]

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Calhoun County, South Carolina Historical Boundary Changes - list of all boundary changes by county provided by Newberry Library; accessed 12/8/2021
  2. Calhoun County, South Carolina Historical Boundary Changes - list of all boundary changes by county provided by Newberry Library; accessed 12/8/2021
  3. Wikipedia contributors, "Calhoun County, South Carolina" in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_South_Carolina. accessed on the 3/27/2019
  4. Voice of Phillip Stalvey, resident of Myrtle Beach, S.C. (2011).
  5. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Calhoun County, South Carolina. Page 611-615 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002; Alice Eichholz, ed. Ancestry’s Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources, Third ed. (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 2004), 607-608.
  6. Calhoun County, South Carolina Historical Boundary Changes - list of all boundary changes by county provided by Newberry Library; accessed 12/8/2021
  7. South Carolina Historical Boundary Changes - list of all boundary changes by county provided by Newberry Library; accessed on 23 November 2021.
  8. Wikipedia contributors, "Calhoun County, South Carolina," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_South_Carolina, accessed 21 December 2019.
  9. "Calhoun County" ( : accessed 15 April 2011).
  10. Schweitzer, George K. , South Carolina Genealogical Research (Knoxville, Tennessee: s.p. 1985), 39-42, FHL book 975.7 D27s
  11. WorldCat 50140092, FHL Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed.] (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), and William E. Myer, Indian Trails of the Southeast. (Nashville, Tenn.: Blue and Gray Press, 1971), 12-14, and the book's pocket map "The Trail System of the Southeastern United States in the Early Colonial Period" (1923). WorldCat 1523234, (FHL Book 970.1 M992i)
  12. Calhoun County, South Carolina Marriage Registers, 1911-1972, Salt Lake City, UT: Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 2002.
  13. South Carolina, Probate Court, Calhoun County, Calhoun County, South Carolina Marriage Licenses, ca. 1911-1950, Salt Lake City, UT: Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 2001.