23 June 2010

Estate Records are Here!

A little while ago I discovered that Lexington County, South Carolina had placed some indices online for marriage and estate records. Listed in the estate record index were documents filed for my Great-Great Grandmother, Ida Leaphart Hyler, her brothers and their father, Frank E Leaphart. Since Frank is one of my brick wall ancestors, I hoped that these records might shed light on his life and ancestry.

I sent a request to the address on the website, requesting information on the records. It turned out that those records were not housed in the county, but were actually at the South Carolina Department of Archives and History. I was able to use
their online form to request the documents listed in the index. After a few weeks, I received an invoice for the records that I'd requested. For $76 the SC Archive would send me about 130 pages of records. Although the price was steep, I decided to go ahead and pay.

Today when I arrived home there was a package waiting for me: stacks of 11x17 paper almost two inches thick. My record request had arrived! Given the size of the materials I received, I really feel like I've gotten my money's worth. I've started skimming through the pages and have already discovered a few interesting facts about my ancestors. My Great-grandmother Ida is at times referred to as an infant, as 12 year old girl and "the former Ida Leaphart, now Mrs. Hyler." I can see numerous pages of ledgers, showing where items for the estate were sold (want a quilt for $2.50?) and where money was taken out for the care of Ida and her orphaned siblings. I also now have another document proving who Ida's maternal grandfather was, as she also inherited part of his estate.

I'm looking forward to reviewing these pages over the coming days, as well as sharing the information with others. I have two scanners at home, neither of which is capable of scanning documents of this size. I need to find somewhere to do this - maybe fedex kinko's? Does anyone have experience with this sort of thing? Any advice would be appreciated.

[Image reproduced from microfilm in South Carolina Department of Archives and History, Columbia, S. C. Lexington County Estate, Box 17, Pg 3, FR 273-368. Estate File of F. E. Leaphart, E1965.]

1 comment:

Patti Browning said...

I used my at home scanner and managed by scanning a half of each sheet in and then blending them together. Took twice as much work but I did it. You might consider that but it is a lot of work.


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