xt7pk06x0p89 https://nyx.uky.edu/dips/xt7pk06x0p89/data/mets.xml Abbeville County, South Carolina South Carolina Historical Records Survey 1938 Prepared by the Historical Records Survey, Division of Women's and Professional Projects, Works Progress Administration; 106 leaves: illustrations, maps, charts, 27 cm; Includes bibliographical references and indexes; UK holds archival copy for ASERL Collaborative Federal Depository Program libraries; Call number Y 3.W 89/2:43/So8c/no.1 books English Columbia, South Carolina: Historical Records Survey This digital resource may be freely searched and displayed in accordance with U. S. copyright laws. South Carolina Works Progress Administration Publications Inventory of the County Archives of South Carolina, Number 1 Abbeville County (Abbeville) text Inventory of the County Archives of South Carolina, Number 1 Abbeville County (Abbeville) 1938 1938 2015 true xt7pk06x0p89 section xt7pk06x0p89 Ei§§j§i,Ci; *@\ “.@Y  “

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a

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INVENTORY OF COUNTY ARCHIVES
OF SOUTH CAROLINA I
Prepared by _
The Historical Records Survey
E _ Division of Women's and Professional Projects
A · Works Pro gre s s Admini str ati on
x` No. l. ABBEVILLE COUNTY (ABBEVILLE)
’ * * * * * * * s * *
Columbia, S. C.
The Historical Records Survey
- April 1958
  I

 4 M
  A
The Historical Records Survey
Luther H. Evans, National Director
Anne K. Gregorie, State Director
Division of Women's and Professional Projects
Ellen S. Woodward, Assistant Administrator
Margaret D. Davies, State Director
WORKS PROGRESS ADMINISTRATION
Harry L. Hopkins, Administrator
Lawrence M. Pinckney, State Administrator
x
O

 FOREWORD
D
The Inventory of County Archives of South Carolina is one of a num-
ber of bibliographies of historical materials prepared throughout the
United States by workers on the Historical Records Survey of the Works
Progress Administration. The publication herewith presented, an inventory
of the archives of Abbeville County, is number l of the South Carolina
SGYIG S9
· The Historical Records Survey was undertaken in the winter of 1935-36
for the purpose of providing useful employment to needy unemployed histo-
rians, lawyers, teachers, and research and clerical workers. In carrying
out this objective, the project was organized to compile inventories of
historical materials, particularly the unpublished government documents and
records which are basic in the administration of local government, and which_
provide invaluable data for students of political, economic, and social his-
tory. The archival guide herewith presented is intended to nest the require-
ments of day-to-day administration by the officials of the county, and also
the needs of lawyers, business men and other citizens who require facts from
the public records for the proper conduct of their affairs. The volume is
so designed that it can be used by the historian in his research in unprinted
· sources in the same way he uses the library card catalog for printed sources.
The inventories produced by the Historical Records Survey attempt to
do more than give merely a list of records - they attempt further to sketch
in the historical background of the county or other unit of government, and
to describe precisely and in detail the organization and functions of the
government agencies whose records they list. The county, town, and other
local inventories for the entire country will, when completed, constitute
an encyclopedia of local government as well as a bibliography of local
archives.
The successful conclusion of the work of the Historical Records Sur-
‘ vey, even in a single county, would not be possible without the support
of public officials, historical and legal specialists, and many other groups
in the community. Their cooperation is gratefully acknowledged.
The Survey was organized and has been directed by Luther H. Evans, and
operates as a nation-wide project in the Division of Women's and Professional
Projects, of which Mrs. Ellen S. Woodward, Assistant Administrator, is in
charge.
i HARRY L. HOPKINS
Administrator
O

 PREFACE
The Historical Records Survey began on a nation-wide scale as a
part of the Federal Writers' Project of the`Works Progress Administra-
tion, and became in October 1936 an independent part of Federal Project
No. 1. Under the national leadership of Dr. Luther H. Evans, formerly
of Princeton, the Survey has inventoried state, county, city, church,
and, to a limited extent, private records. At present, it is preparing
for publication in a condensed form, descriptive lists of public records
of the local units of government. In each state the counties are numbered
in alphabetical order, and treated as separate units, each with an intro-
ductory section giving the historical background and a description of the
present government and records system. All records are organized under the
office of origin, which is carefully described as to history, functions, and
required records. Each type of record is given a numbered entry showing
the comprehensive dates for which it is extant, the quantity, an interpre-
tation of contents, and details as to nature of recording, indexing and
location. State, municipal, church, and other records will be described
in separate publications.
The Historical Records Survey was begun in South Carolina on March 1,
1936. From the beginning it has had the active aid and cooperation of the
University of South Carolina, through Professor Robert L. Meriwether, head
; of the department of history, whose private library and scholarly counsel 2
` are always at the disposal of the Survey. Acknowledgments for administra-
. tive support and cooperation are also accorded to the officials of the
South Carolina`Works Progress Administration.
The survey of Abbeville County records was begun on April 4, 1936, by
Mrs. Lazelle E. Pratt, who carried on the work until January 30, 1937. Of
the officials of Abbeville who cooperated with the survey, special acknowl-
edgments are due Addison B. Carwile, judge of probate, and J. L. Perrin,
clerk of court. During October l-25, 1937, Marvin M. Smith, field super-
visor, cheeked from the records the work of Mrs. Pratt and survef the of-
fices she did not reach, making practically a new survey. The essay on the
care and housing of records is also the work of Mr. Smith. The state office
A is responsible for the historical and legal research and for the writing of
the introductory essays. The scope of the survey and the pattern of the
inventory are the work of the national office,
The forty-six separate units of the Inventory of County Archives of
South Carolina will be issued in mimeographed form for free distribution to
state and loca1·pub1ic officials and to a selected group of public and in-
stitutional libraries. Requests for information should be addressed to the
state director, University of South Carolina, Columbia.
aww, \t. *5 ··~¤-?f¢‘=~°·
December 20, 1937 ~ Anne K. Gregorie
State Director
J Historical Records Survey .
I

 TABLE OF CONTENTS
A. Abbeville County and its Records System Page
l. Historical Sketch ........................................... .... 4
2. Governmental Organization and Records System....... ............. 6
y 5. Housing, Care, and Accessibility of the Records...... .... . ...... ll
4. List of Abbreviations, Symbols and Explanatory Notes............ 15
B. County Offices and their Records
I. Legislative Delegation... ............ . ................... . ...... 17
II. Board of County Commissioners ................................... l7
Minutes and Reports. Claims and Warrants. Supplies and
4 Contracts. Bookkeeping Records. Special Accounts: Roads;
Equipment. Correspondence. Highway Com ission (defunct).
Courthouse Commission (defunct). "
III. County Court (defunct) .......... . .... ,........ ...... ........ .... 25
IV. Clerk of Court as Register of Mesne Conveyance.. ....... .,.. ..... 26 A
Real Property: Deeds and Plats; Mortgages. Personal Prop-
C erty. Statutory Liens. Attachments. Business Registrations.
Surety Bonds. I
V. Com issioner of Location (defunct). ............................. 52
VI. Clerk of Court......... .......,................................. 53
County Officers. Professional Registrations. Business Reg-
istrations. Licenses. Motor Registrations. Military Records.
Alcoholic Liquor Records. Voters and Elections. Bond Issues.
Vital Statistics.
VII. Circuit Court of General Sessions. ................ . ...... . ...... 38
Sessions Cases. Dockets. Minutes. Reports. Jurors and
Court Costs. Fines and Forfeitures.
VIII. Circuit Solicitor......... ..... . .......... . .................... . 43
IX. Grand Jury ...... . ................................. . ............. 44
X. Board of Jury Commissioners ..................................... 45
XI. Circuit Court of Common Pleas ......................... . ........ . 45
` Judgments. Calendars. Initiatory Proceedings. Legal
Notices. Attachments, Injunctions, and Bonds. Bankruptcy.
» Minutes. Estate Records. Naturalization. Miscellaneous. _ -

 Table of Contents
A Page
XII. Court of Equity (defunct) ........ . .............. . .......... 52
Papers of Record and Indexes. Registers of Initiatory
Proceedings. Minutes and Reports. Estate Records.
XIII. Master .................... . ................................ 56
XIV. Judge of Probate. .......................................... 57
Transmission of Property: Papers of Record and Indexes;
Transcripts. Accounts. Court Procedure. Commitments.
Marriage. Liquor Permits. Ninety Six District.
· XV. Magistrates .... ... .... ... ................................ .. .64
XVI. Court of Magistrates and Freeholders (defunct).... ....... .. 65
XVII. Sheriff .................................................... 66
XVIII. Rural Police (defunct) ..................................... 68
XIX. Coroner. ........... . ......................... . ............. 68
( XX. Auditor .... . .... . ....... . ............... - ................. .. 69 (
Tax Records. Miscellaneous Financial Records. y
l
XXI. Board of Equalization ...... . ........................... .... 75
XXII. Treasurer .............................................. .... 73 (
Taxation. Bookkeeping Records.
XXIII. Forfeited Land Commission. ..................... . ........... 78
XXIV. Superintendent of Education ................................ 78
Minutes and Reports. Financial Records. Miscellaneous.
XXV. Board of Registration .... . ................... . ............. 81 _
XXVI. Commissioners of Election ......................... . ........ 82
XXVII. County Board of Control (defunct) ................... _ ....... 85
XXVIII. Board of Honor (inactivc)......... ......................... 83
XXIX. Service Officer ................................ ...... .... .. 84
XXX. Health Unit.... .... .... .............................. . ..... 85
Correspondence and Reports. Examinations. Maternal and
Child Health.
XXXI. Hospital ........... . .................................. ..,.. 86
XXXII. Farm Demonstration Agent. .................................. 87

 Table of Contents
Page
XXXIII. Home Demonstration Agent.. .... . .... .... ........... . ...... 88
XXXIV. Cooperative Soil Conservation Association Board .... . ..... 88
· Index
' Chronological... .... .i ..... ; .......... ............ .... 89
~ Alphabetical. ..,.... ac ..,.......,.. . ,... . ............. 96
V Illustrations 4
. Abbeville County Courthouse... .... . ........... ...frontispiece
Map of Circuit Court Districts, 1769 ....... ......Qollowing 3
Chart of County Government...... .... . ............ following lO
Map of Abbeville County ................... . ...... following 16
Map of Counties and Circuit Court Districts, . `
l785......Q9llowing 25
Map of Counties, 1938, showing year of origin...Qgllpwing 106

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(First entry, p. 20)
l l. HHSTORICAL SKETCH
In the winter of 1747, when the Cherokee Indians by treaty with Gover-
nor Glen, sold their lands south and east of Long Cane Creek, most of the
area of modern Abbeville County was nominally opened to settlement. After
the defeat of the Cherokees in the southern phase of the French and Indian
War, the Indian boundary was marked in 1766 along the line which still re-
mains the northwestern boundary of Abbeville County. (D. D. Wallace, History
. of S. C., N. Y., 1934, 5 vols. I, 447; II, $4.) —————-—-
With the expulsion of the Indians, the policy of settling townships in
the wilderness was resumed. lo attract settlers, lands were offered Europe- _
an Protestants, and in the northern part of the present county, Boonesbcrough I
was laid out for Irish Protestants. Settlement was rapid. German Palatines
were encouraged to raise flax and hemp on Hard Labor Creek in Londonborough
Township, and French Hugucnots made silk and wine in Hillsborough Township,
where they gave name to New Bordeaux. (Ibid.,pp. 41-46.)
The advance of settlement brought demands for local government. Theo-
retically, the new townships might be regarded as lying in extensions of the
parishes of Prince William, Saint Peter, and Saint Bartholomew, in Granville
and Colleton Counties; but no voter eared to travel a_hundred and fifty.miles
to cast his vote at a parish church. Still less did he relish the necessity
‘ of going to Charleston for all court business. Nevertheless, for the elections
of 1769, Patrick Calhoun of Long Canes, at the head of his constituents,
traveled down to the church of Prince William's Parish and was elected to l
the general assembly ( ibid., p. 58), the first representative of the back- _
country from a low-country precinct. In the same year, as a concession to
frontier demand, the Crown approved the circuit court act of 1769 (J. F.
Grimke, Public Laws ..., Phila. 1790, pp.268-75), and Ninety Six District
was created as a circuit court district which included the entire northwestern
section of South Carolina. The courthouse and jail were built "within a mile
of the place where fort Ninety Six stoo3" (Stat. IV, 525) at the ancient
trading post of that name, in what is new Greenwood County. After the Revo-
lution, Ninety Six District was subdivided in 1785 into six counties. For
` the first time Abbeville was named, probably in compliment to its French
Protestants, as "one county, situate, lying and being on Savannah river and
adjoining the old Indian boundary, and known in the map of Ninety-Six district
by the name of Abbeville" (Stat. IV, 661). In the same year, the people
and the newly ceded lands above-the Indian boundary south of the Saluda River
were attached to Abbeville County (ibid., p. 665), which included the greater
portion of Ninety Six District. _
The justices named for Abbeville County in March 1785 were Andrew Pick-
ens, Patrick Calhoun, William Moore, Robert Anderson, John Bowie, Andrew
- Hamilton, and John Harris (SJ, 1785, pp. 386-87). They were responsible for
carrying out the provisions of the county court act, charged to select a
A site for the courthouse and jail near the center of the county, and to hold
court four times a year as a group. They built the first primitive public
I buildings, equipped with pillory and stock; on a let in the present town I
For abbreviations and explanatory notes see pages 15-16

  I
  - 5 -
p Insterical Sketch (First entry, p. 20)
A of Abbeville, where Andrew Hamilton had built the first house soon after the
Revolution. In later years, the Hamilton house became the law office of young
John Caldwell Calhoun before he rose to national distinction, and still later
it became the first United States post office (J. Logan, History of Upper Car-
olina, Charleston and Columbia, 1859, p. 40). A contemporary of Calhoun, __-
Langdon Chcves, another native of Abbeville, also became a national figure,
I as member of Congress and as president of the Bank of the United States at a
critical period. These men received their education at the famous academy of
Dr. Moses Waddel at Willington (now in McCormick County), which gave the boys
· of Abbeville unusual advantages in the early years of the republic.
A In 1789, Pendleton County was cut off from Abbeville (Stat. VII, 252).
A In 1800, Abbeville County became Abbeville District (ibid. 284); the records
of the abandoned courthouse of the defunct Ninety Six District were divided
' among the new district to which they pertained (Stat. VII, 288) and Abbe-
ville received a share (entries 160, 178, 204). The old county courthouse
was then sold (Stat. V, 467) and a new building was erected, probably on the
same site, under a contract with John Brannon (ibid., p. 692) and an appre-
priation of asooo (ibid., p. 576). A generation later, double this amount
was appropriated fer_a_ncw courthouse and jail (1827, Stat. VI, 551). By
1852, these buildings had become obsolete, and $15,000 -,supplemented the
next year by $6450 - was appropriated for the fourth courthouse and jail (Stat.
; XII, 151, 202). These buildings passed through the Civil War intact, but on
January 19, 1875, the courthouse was burned (Stat. XV, 452). The records were
rescued, however, and deposited in buildings across the street from the court-
' house square. Later, on November 17, one of these buildings was burned (ibid.)
and all records were lest except these of the judye of probate and of the de-
V funet court of equity, which were in a separate buildin;. I
‘ After the Civil War, under the Constitution of 1868, Abbeville District
“ became once more Abbeville County, with boundaries unchanged (art. II, 5)
from those of 1789. Since adoption of the Constitution of 1895, the histor-
ical lines have been altered by the creation of new counties. An eastern see-
tion was cut off in 1897 to become part of Greenwood County (Stat. XXII, 604),
the boundary with which was adjusted in 1898 (ibid. 895-96); Efsbuthern area
was severed in 1916 to be included with·McCormick County (Stat. XXIX, 717-
t 18).
The present boundaries are: on the southwest, the Savannah River, which
separates it from Georgia; on the northwest, Anderson County, from which it
is separated by the old Indian boundary; on the northeast by Greenwood County
and by Laurens County, from which it is separated by the Saluda River; and on
~ the southeast by McCormick County (Code 2976).
The area of Abbeville County is new only about half of the 992 square
miles which it comprised in the year 1789. Some of the most badly eroded ‘
f hills are included in the Sumter National Forest area and are being re-forest-
1 ed. The population decreased in the decade 1920-50 from 27,159 to 25,525
J persons, most of whom are engaged in apriculture. Textile industries are de-
‘ veloping at Calhoun Falls and at Abbeville, the county seat. Mineral resources
1 For abbreviations and explanatory notes see pages 15-16

 (F
  - 6 ~
Q Governmental Organization and Records System (First entry, p. 20)
of feldspar, mica, fullers' earth, and asbestos await development. (South
Carolina ... by Department of Agriculture and Clemson College, Co1umbiET_l927
pp ._-2_8—5—-86 .) "
2. GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATION AND RECORDS SYSTEM
The state Constitution of 1778, under which Abbeville County was formed
in 1785, contained no regulations for the formation of counties. The Con-
7 stitution of 1790 also ignored provision for local governmental units, and
in 1800 when Abbeville County became a circuit court district, the change
was statutory. The Constitution of 1868 restored the name Abbeville County,
standardized the judicial district as an election unit, and limited the area ·
of beth new and old counties to not less than 625 square miles ( art. II, 5).
It is significant that this constitution delegated county government to a
constitutional board of three elected commissioners (art.IV, 19), but under
a joint resolution of the general assembly in 1889, an amendment removed this
lindtation upon legislative control (Stat. XX, 288, 650). The Constitution
of 1895 named the county as a body corporate, as well as a judicial and an
election district (art. VII, 9), and devoted an article of fourteen sections
to legal requirements for formation of new counties, fixing the size at not
less thant 400 square miles, the taxable property at not less than $1,500,000
and the population at not less than I/124 of the total population of the
state. Among the various other provisions, not one impaired the powers of
‘ the state legislature over county government. No rigid line can yet be drawn
between state and county government in South Carolina, and what is called
county government is in fact an extension of a highly centralized state gov-
ernment to forty—six localities, where the details are largely in the hands ·
of the local members of the state legislature, com only called the county
' legislative delegation. Furthermore, the county auditor and the county treas-
t urer are essentially part of the state financial system; and the clerk of court
. as an official of state courts is a state officer. The school system is a
state system and the teachers are state employees whose salaries are paid eight
months of the year by the state.
. Abbeville County has two major groups of offices, the administrative
I and the judicial. The administrative group is concerned largely with fiscal
matters, and consists of the board of com issioners, the auditor, the treas- C
urer, and the superintendent of education. The legislative delegation works
closely with those, contro11in;_assessmonts, supplies, and more or less of
the appointments. The judicial group consists of the peace officers and the
offices connected with the courts of record, including the clerk of court as
‘ register of mesne conveyance, for registering contracts and property titles., X
out of which so much court business arises. Various boards carry on miscel- c
I laneous functions, such as elections, registrations of voters, and the safe-
guarding of public health.
The county beard of commissioners, with the supervisor as chairnmn, is
_ the administrative body which acts in the name of the county when it sues or
€ For abbreviations and explanatory notes see pages l5-16 -

   — 7 —
E Governmental Organization and Records System (First entry, p. 20)
{ is sued, or functions in its corporate capacity. The board is authorized
F to fix county expenses, approve claims, borrow money when necessary, maintain
{ roads and bridges, provide tools, guards, food, clothing and shelter for
I county convicts, to care for the paupers, and report to the circuit court
q the conduct of the county business. The amount to be spent by the board
A is determined by the county supply act, passed by the general assembly each
A year as a local law, sponsored by the legislative delegation.
The legislative delegation consists of one senator elected for four
years, and two representatives, elected for two years (Stat. XXXVII, 1111).
As members of the state legislature, which has constitutional control of
the counties, and as representatives of the people of the county to whom ·
l they are directly responsible, the legislative delegation has large powers.
It fixes the number and salary of county officers and their assistants, _
except those established by law. It determines the amount to be spent by .
the county for the upkeep of reads, chaingang, jail, and poor farm. Before
the convening of the legislature, county officials submit to the delegation,
through the supervisor, written estimates of the anticipated needs of their
offices for the coming year. From these estimates the county budget is made
up as the basis of the county supply bill. No funds may be diverted from
one appropriation to another without the written consent of a majority of
A the delegation, including the senator; and the com issioners render a monthly
account of expenditures to each member of the delegation.
~ After the estimated county expenses are known, taxes are assessed to
raise the money. From January to March of each year, the taxpayers file
with the auditor, returns of their taxable possessions. The auditor, with
the town and township boards of assessors, determines the assessed value
to be placed upon properties of the taxpayers (Code 2715, 2743). The state _
constitution provides that "state, county, township, school, municipal and
all other taxes shall be levied on the same assessment, which shall be that
made for state taxes" (art. X, 13). As soon as property is listed by tax-
payers in annual returns to the auditor, tax assessments immediately become
7 a first lien`on the property (Code 2569, 2571).
The county board of equalization is composed of the chairman from each
of the township boards of assessors. Its duty is to equalize the burdens ·
I of taxation by raising or lowering the assessed value of real or personal
property which has been returned below or above its true value. Although_ -
the board may reduce individual items, it may not reduce the aggregate value
of real or personal property in the county as a whole below the amount re-
turned to the county auditor (Code 2736-48). If a person whose property has
A been over·assessed cannot secure relief from the county board of equalization,
7 he may appeal to the South Carolina Tax Com ission (ibid. 2427). Since the =
formation of this body in 1915 (Stat. XXIX, 125), local taxation has become '
i of less relative importance, and the counties new receive a large part of
( their funds from liquor licenses, corporation, income, stamp, and other taxes
under the jurisdiction of the commission.
The county auditor makes up from the taxpayers' returns two "duplieates",
or complete lists of taxable property in the county, one for the treasurer
` and one for himself (Code 2713). To the comptroller general he sends an an-
1 For abbreviations and explanatory notes see pages l5-16
 
a

 l ' 
; '
  — 8 -
Z Governmental Organization and Records System (First entry, p. 20)
* nual abstract of the duplicate (ibid. 2728), which is combined with ab-
j straets from other counties to arrive at the aggregate value of property
r in the state, as the basis for the general tax rate. To the county super-
` intendent of education he reports by school districts the names listed for
7 poll taxes, and the amount of taxable property when there is a special levy
for schools (ibid. 2708).
The treasurer is required to make monthly reports to the comptroller
general (Code 2802), and both monthly and annual reports to the superin— ,
s tendent of education on the collection and disbursements ef all school taxes
(ibid. 2801, 2828). The treasurer also reports to the county commissioners
1 twice a month the amount and the character of funds collected for the county. '
At the end of the fiscal year the books of the treasurer are balanced with I
these of the auditor in an annual settlement. The amount of taxes the
treasurer was charged to collect must be balanced against the amount collected, Y
showing also the amount the sheriff was to collect and the amount collected.
At the time of the annual settlement of the county treasurer, it is the duty
of the auditor to notify the superintendent of education, the board of com-
missioners, the sheriff, the foreman of the grand jury, and the state comp-
troller general, so that they may witness the settlement (ibid. 2858-59],
The treasurer also makes annual reports to the court of geEEFal sessions ·
(sum. zazs), - ·
Lll school taxes are collected by the treasurer, but school funds are 1
` separate from county and state funds. Fiscal and other affairs of the
school are administered by the county superintendent of education elected
by the people (Code 5508), a county board appointed by the state board of ‘
education (Code 5535) and school district boards of three trustees each,
appointed by the county board (Qgdg 5569). The constitutional 5-mill tax
( on real property is apportioned among the schools on the basis of attend-
ance, and all poll taxes ge to the respective districts. Except for the
—county beard fund, which is allocated to the districts by the county board,
all school funds are disbursed by the county superintendent, who is primari-
ly a fiscal officer and signs the school warrants as the supervisor does the y
1 county warrants.
South Carolina is divided into fourteen judicial circuits (Code 50), (
each having one resident judge (Const. 1895, V, 15). Abbeville County is (
in the eighth judicial circuit and has regular sittings of the two state
constitutional circuit courts of eom on pleas and general sessions.
The court of common pleas has original jurisdiction in civil cases,
such as disputes about the ownership of property, or the payment of debts
or damages, subject to appeal to the state supreme court. It has appellate
jurisdiction in civil cases from the probate court, and in minor civil cases I
from the magistrates! courts. It meets in Abbeville County on the fourth
Monday in March, the second Monday in October, and the second Monday in
December. The master relieves the docket of the court by deciding eases
referred to him under court order; he makes sales which the court orders in
{ granting equitable relief and he executes the resulting eonveyances. ·
For abbreviations and explanatory notes see pages 15-16 ”

  
al
  - 9 ..
Q Governmental Organization and Records System (First entry, p. 20)
2 The court of general sessions has original jurisdiction in criminal
* eases, and both concurrent and appellate jurisdiction with magistrates'
courts in eases of riot, assault and battery, and larceny. It meets in
Abbeville County on the fourth Monday in February, the first Monday in June
and the first Monday in September (Code 58).
The grand jury is an important part of the court of general sessions.
` It is drawn each year and consists of eighteen members, twelve of whom must
agree on a matter before it can be submitted to the court as a "true bill".
If the evidence is not sufficient, it is returned to the judge as "no bill".
Six men are drawn from the old grand jury each year, in order to avoid having ·
all new members. The grand jury inspects conditions in the county jail,
offices, and institutions, and recom ends needed improvements (Const. 1895,
1, 17; v, 22). Y
Details of drawing the grand and petit juries are delegated to the jury
commissioners, composed of the auditor, the treasurer, and the clerk of
court. The last has the custody of the jury box, in which the names of
electors and the box of talosmen are secured with three different locks so
that it cannot be opened except in the presence of all three com issioners
(code 607, coe).
There are six magisterial district in Abbeville County (Acts 1957, p.
715). A magistrate has jurisdiction in civil cases involving property valued
at not more than $ 100, and in criminal cases where the penalty does not ex-
ceed a fine of $ 100, or thirty days in prison. His warrants are served and
executed by his constable, except at Abbeville, where the sheriff serves
both civil and criminal papers (Acts 1937, p. 715). The magistrate usually
settles his c