COLONIAL QUITRENT LISTS
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These are copies of the original quitrent lists for South Carolina. They are from the hardcopy records available from the South Carolina Department of Archives and History. They have not been microfilmed at this time, so this website is the only way to access the records outside of either viewing the original at the archives building or ordering photocopies (as I did to complete this project).
The volume is oversized and the photocopy pages were unable to cover the entire page. Hence, each file is a merger of four photocopied images. The breakline was chosen to minimize text interference and maximize continuity of the images, although it was not always completely possible. The images are necessarily oversized, so if you wish to print a hardcopy, you will have to resize the image down. The original pages in the book are two somewhat larger than 11” x 14” pages side-by-side.
Note that many landowners paid quitrents in arrears since they had to travel to Charleston to make the payments. Consequently, some landowners are not on the list for one or two consecutive years, but then appear in the next year and are assessed back taxes. This is annotated as “3 yr” or “2 yr”, and etc., in the descriptive column next to the landowner’s name. Also, at the far right, other notes were sometimes entered as appropriate to record information about the lands being taxed.
The tax records were entered chronologically by the date the tax was paid, not geographically nor alphabetically. At some point I hope to provide an index of names, but in the meantime, here are the papers in their original form.
Researchers might wonder how, given that the records cover many years, the handwriting on the pages is identical across the series. According to the South Carolina Department of Archives and History, “The Quitrent Book, Receiver General (S209001) for 1764 appears to be in the hand of Richard Lambton, the Deputy Auditor. I believe the book to be an official office copy, probably assembled from receipt books and ledgers that are no longer extant. The books were all rebound about thirty-five years ago, so the original binding is lost. There are no notations regarding the date of writing. These records would have been copied into the Quitrent Book no later than 1764, I believe, as they were active records. There would certainly be no reason to copy them after 1775, as their connection to the Crown would have made the information in them largely moot.” So, in essence, these records are analogous to land deeds and wills in the South Carolina colonial, state and county records – they are not the literal *original record*, but are a copy of the original. As such, there may be the occasional transfer / transcription errors in spelling, entries or the like, which will be undetectable to us today as we do not have the originals to compare this copy to. However, as noted, the copy was made more-or-less contemporaneous to the event, so they are as accurate as we can have for these records for the timeframe covered. The entire series appears to be in the same hand, but later years do appear to have a very slightly different style. The loss of the original binding material makes it impossible to determine the manufacturing date of the ledger book in its original form.
Quitrent List Volume Intro Pages
1760 Quitrent List
1761 Quitrent List
1762 Quitrent List
1763 Quitrent List
1764 Quitrent List
These years aren’t arranged yet – either the formatted files or the base digitized files are in the folders.