South Carolina research a must for many Georgia families

South Carolina was founded in 1663 as part of the larger Carolina colony, 70 years before the founding of Georgia in 1733. Many Georgia families have roots from that state, making knowing where to research there a must.

A major source for records from across the state is the South Carolina Magazine of Ancestral Research, or SCMAR, which is beginning its 39th year and is edited by Brent H. Holcomb. A look at the three index volumes covering the first 30 years helps one find clues. Most articles are abstracts of records, many of which never appear in published books.

To get a year's subscription (four issues), send $30 to SCMAR, P. O. Box 21766, Columbia, SC 29221.

Further research in South Carolina needs to be conducted at the South Carolina Archives in Columbia, which is no longer downtown but on the northeast side, off I-77. To get a head start on research, check its website at for the many indexes to materials online. Also check for its hours, for in the era of budget cuts, one can never be sure when a facility is open.

Material can be found at the archives at the state level. There also are a great deal of original and microfilmed materials for every county, much of which may no longer be easily located at a county courthouse.

If one has roots in Charleston, or is planning on a visit there, check out the South Carolina Historical Society in downtown Charleston at 100 Meeting St. or go to its website at

There are other great materials at the Charleston County Public Library, such as the Charleston Archives and the South Carolina Room. Details are available on the library's website at A visit to the Charleston Library Society, founded in 1748, could also be interesting. For information, check

The South Carolina Genealogical Society, with a workshop in Columbia every July, covers the activities of many county-based societies. See the society's website at for its quarterly and the various societies it represents.

South Carolina-related periodicals, including SCMAR, the South Carolina Historical and Genealogical Magazine and many county society publications can be found at the Georgia Archives and libraries with genealogical collections.

Topic: Alabama and Mississippi

For the latest publications covering Alabama and Mississippi, one rather obscure publishing house producing good material is the Pioneer Publishing Co., P. O. Box 408, Carrollton, MS 38917. It offers the important series on Alabama newspaper abstracts by Larry E. Caver, as well as many Mississippi works covering pensions, newspapers, marriages and various county sources. Its website is

Topic: Georgia Historical Society collections

The Georgia Historical Society has published a series of "collections" that include important material from its library/archives going back to 1839. The 21 volumes in this series, which began in 1840, have now been digitized and can be found on The series includes the letters of Gov. James Wright, James Habersham and Benjamin Hawkins, and various Colonial documents. The society's site is at, where you can learn about using its collection.