South Carolina, Charleston County, Charleston Poorhouse and Correctional House Records - FamilySearch Historical Records

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South Carolina, Charleston County, Charleston Poorhouse and Correctional House Records, 1803-1916
This article describes a collection of records at
Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, 
United States
South Carolina flag.png
Flag of South Carolina
US Locator South Carolina.png
Location of South Carolina
Record Description
Record Type Poor houses and Poor Law records
Collection years 1803-1916
FamilySearch Resources
Charleston County Public Library, Charleston Archive

What is in This Collection?[edit | edit source]

Registers of outdoor pensioners at the Charleston City poorhouse and registers of inmates at the Charleston City correctional house many of which were free African Americans and former slaves for years 1803-1916. These records include birth, residence and occupation information and sometimes include family groups.

Image Visibility[edit | edit source]

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What Can These Records Tell Me?[edit | edit source]

The following information may be found in these records:

Admission Record

  • Name
  • Date of admission
  • By whose order
  • Nativity place
  • Age
  • Occupation
  • Time of Residence in Charleston
  • Date of discharge
  • Date of death, if applicable
  • Length of stay
  • Remarks

House of Correction

  • Date
  • Name of prisoner
  • Place of Nativity
  • Last residence
  • How long in Charleston
  • Occupation
  • When discharged and Remarks

Outdoor Pensioners

  • Name
  • Date
  • Residence, time there an rent payed per month
  • Age
  • Sex
  • Color
  • Number of children
  • Nativity
  • Trade
  • Other support
  • Recommended by whom
  • Remarks

Collection Content[edit | edit source]

Sample Images[edit | edit source]

How Do I Search This Collection?[edit | edit source]

Search the Index[edit | edit source]

Search by name on the Collection Details Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes in the Search Collection section with the information you know
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

How Do I Analyze the Results?[edit | edit source]

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.

What Do I Do Next?[edit | edit source]

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • Add the new information to your records
  • Use the information to find the person in other records
  • Analyze the entry to see if it provides additional clues to find other records of the person or their family

I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • Indexes and transcriptions may not include all the data found in the original records. View the image for addition information
  • If your ancestor does not have a common name, collect entries for every person who has the same surname. This list can help you find possible relatives
  • If you cannot locate your ancestor in the locality in which you believe they lived, then try searching records of a nearby town or county
  • Try different spellings of your ancestor’s name
  • Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names, or even initials

Research Helps[edit | edit source]

The following articles will help you in your research for your family in the state of South Carolina.

Citing This Collection[edit | edit source]

Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.

Collection Citation:
The citation for this collection can be found on the Collection Details Page in the section Citing this Collection.
Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation can be viewed by clicking the drop-down arrow next to Document Information.