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Mar 06, 2018

African American Genealogy: Was Your Male Ancestor Listed in the South Carolina 1869 Militia Enrollments?

1869 Militia Enrollment, Beverly Vance

South Carolina has 1869 Militia Enrollments for males 30 to 45.  You can see if your ancestor was listed among the other males who were in the militia. The series is arranged alphabetically, by township, by age group, and alphabetically by first letter of the last name. Your ancestor might not appear because he was exempt for the following reasons:

  • exempted governmental official
  • clergyman
  • fireman
  • physician
  • professor
  • teacher
  • student (in college, academy, common school)
  • soldiers and sailors in the armed forces of the US and those honorably discharged
  • idiots, lunatics, paupers, and persons convicted of infamous crimes

The militia enrollment gathered the following information about your ancestor:  name, age, occupation, place of residence, and race. The City of Columbia includes street names. Williams County includes the name of the landowner, head of household or plantation with the residence. The volumes for Horry, Orangerburg, Laurens, and Oconee counties do not survive.  The Charleston volume includes only wards one through three and a part of ward four. See South Carolina Archives Description, Militia Enrollments, 1869.

See the Online Index at South Carolina Department of Archives and History to access the Militia Enrollments:



Enter your male ancestor’s last name and then first name, and suggestions will appear below the box as you type his name. Enter the county where your ancestor was living at that time, and click “search” leaving all other fields blank.



The index looks like this:




Online images are available for these records. Notice in the following example, the men are listed in alphabetical order, and they are not separated by race:



Sharpen the Saw

Is your ancestor among the Militia Enrollments, 1869? Go to the Online-Index and search for every male that was between 18-45. If your ancestor is not there, try to determine why. Come and share your experience in our Facebook Group.