Census Records for South Carolina

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This entry was originally written by Johni Cerny and Gareth L. Mark for Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources.

This article is part of
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the South Carolina Family History Research series.
History of South Carolina
South Carolina Vital Records
Census Records for South Carolina
Background Sources for South Carolina
South Carolina Maps
South Carolina Land Records
South Carolina Probate Records
South Carolina Court Records
South Carolina Tax Records
South Carolina Cemetery Records
South Carolina Church Records
South Carolina Military Records
South Carolina Periodicals, Newspapers, and Manuscript Collections
South Carolina Archives, Libraries, and Societies
South Carolina Immigration
African Americans of South Carolina
South Carolina County/District Resources
Map of South Carolina


Populations Schedules

• Indexed'1790, 1800 (see note below), 1810, 1820, 1830, 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930

• Soundex'1880, 1900, 1910, 1920

Industry and Agriculture Schedules

• 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880

Mortality Schedules

• 1850 (indexed), 1860 (indexed), 1870, 1880

Slave Schedules

• 1850, 1860

Union Veterans

• 1890

The South Carolina Department of Archives and History holds all of the federal census records either in original or microfilm form. Part of the 1800 census for Richland District is missing. The 1850 census of York and Lexington districts indicates county of birth as well as state for each person.


South Carolina did not conduct any full colonial censuses; there are fragments of state census returns available at the South Carolina Department of Archives and History. The 1829 state census of Fairfield and Laurens districts and the 1839 state census of Kershaw and Chesterfield districts are extant. The population returns for the 1869 state census are complete except for Clarendon, Oconee, and Spartanburg Counties. The 1875 state census returns are available for Clarendon, Newberry, and Marlboro Counties, as are partial returns for Abbeville, Beaufort, Fairfield, Lancaster, and Sumter counties. The original returns are found at the South Carolina Department of Archives and History; some of the returns have been published in South Carolina's historical and genealogical periodicals.

External Links

  • South Carolina Census Records - free up-to-date guide to accessing South Carolina census records. Identifies federal, state, and colonial censuses, as well as substitute records (FamilySearch Research Wiki).