South Carolina Pioneers

Greenville County Probate Records

Greenville, SCGreenville, SC Greenville County originally belonged to the Cherokee Indians, until 1777 when they ceded their lands to the state and English and Scotch-Irish settlers began settling. Greenville District was created in 1786, but from 1791 to 1800 it was part of the larger Washington District. The county seat was originally named Pleasantburg, but in 1831 the name was changed to Greenville. Early settlers: Arnold Russell, William Henry Lyttleton, Frederick Winter, Jesse Saxon, John Robinson, Evan Thomas, George Salmon, Wiat Anderson, John Holland, General Nathaniel Greene (1742-1786) and others.

Greenville County Probate Records available to members of South Carolina Pioneers

Images of Greenville County Wills 1787 to 1818 Digital Images of Inventories and Appraisements 1825 to 1829 Subscribe and view will transcripts, etc.




Tory Threatens to Hang Patriot
By Jeannette Holland Austin Jeannette Holland Austin(Profile)

Reuben Harrison served with Colonel Richardson Owens during the Revolutionary War. He was sent from Flower Gap in Surry County, North Carolina by Colonel Owens with a letter to Colonel Benjamin Cleveland advising Cleveland when he would advance upon the Tories. En route, he was captured by the Tories and mistreated. They threatened to hang him. A Tory by the name of George Roberts took him into his arms and shaking him, told him that he would be hanged if he did not disclose his business. But his step-son, a young man, interceded that persuaded the Tory to release Harrison because of his youth. He had hidden the letter in the crown of his hat, and although the Tories removed it, did not see it. Therefore, Harrison was released and went on to deliver the letter to Colonel Cleveland before returning to Flower Gap. Revolutionary War Pensions provide a great deal of personal information about the soldiers as well as battles. They are certainly worth studying and using to piece together family puzzles.

The Story of the American Revolution was Told in Pension Records

Battle of Stono When the Tories were encamped upon the Reedy River on Indian land, Charles Littleton was drafted to fight in the Revolutionary War for three months. Such was the situation of most patriots; they were first drafted to fight skirmishes near their home, then, as the war progressed, re-enlisted upon numerous occasions to fight in specific battles. Littleton was assigned to a company commanded by Captain William Gordon under Colonel John Lisle for a tour called "The Snow Campaign" which lasted from 8 December of 1775 to the end of that month. After he returned home he learned that the Tories were in Georgia, so he volunteered. They pursued this batch of Tories as far as the St. Mary's River and the Tories escaped to St. Augustine, Florida. Later, during June of 1779, Littleton was called into service to help repulse the British at Stono,South Carolina, however, were repulsed by the British. After a short while at home and when the British took Charleston on May 12, 1780, he was again called into service, this time under the command of General Andrew Pickens and was marched towards Camden, South Carolina where the Tories and British had collected in large bodies. General Pickens found himself unable to contend with the enemy, so ordered the army to disperse and to "make the best of their way to save themselves." Littleton returned home where he spent the night before being collected to march into North Carolina. He fought at the battle of Rocky Mount on July 30, 1780 and the Battle of Hanging Rock on August 6, 1780, then took possession of the ferry at Camden where his regiment remained for four days. Unfortunately, General Horatio Gates was defeated and General Sumpter was on the run being pursued by none other than Lt. Colonel Tarleton who handily defeated the Americans at Fishing Creek. Once again the army dispersed. But Littleton was in for the duration, so was collected at Charlotte in North Carolina for the purpose of reassembling at the fishing dam of the Broad River. From there they were marched to Blackstock Plantation on the Tyger River and were engaged once again by Tarleton and was the place where General Sumpter was wounded. From there, they marched to the Iron Works on Lawson Fork Creek near Spartanburg under the command of General Pickens. Littleton went on to fight in the battle of Cowpens on January 17, 1781 and afterwards, his regiment was ordered to remain on the field of battle in charge of the dead and wounded. Finally, Littleton was marched to Earles Station east of Tryon, North Carolina to engage the Indians on the frontier, which is were Littleton remained until peace was made. Source: Revolutionary War Pension of Charles Littleton, W8255.

Kilgore-Lewis House

Kilgore-LewisJosiah Kilgore built his house in Greenville about 1838. It is one of the few remaining antebellum buildings in Greenville, a frame house with Greek Revival elements, hand-blown glass windows, wooden-peg construction and copper roofing.


Map of Greenville County

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