South Carolina | Gilliams of Virginia

The GILLIAMs of South Carolina
Updated March 24, 2016


Background
In 1663 King Charles II created the colony of Carolina (named for King Charles II) by granting the territory, of what is now roughly North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, to loyal supporters. This colonial charter was challenged by many Virginians who had settled in Albemarle Sound and resented their inclusion in the Carolina Charter. Charleston (originally Charles Town after the King) was founded in 1670 by a group of 200 colonists from English Barbados. The leader of the colonists was Sir John Yeamans, a powerful plantation owner on Barbados.

By 1708, a majority of the non-native inhabitants were African slaves. Native Americans, ravaged by diseases against which they had no resistance, last significantly threatened the colony's existence in the Yemassee War of 1715. After the colonists revolted against proprietary rule in 1719, the proprietors' interests were bought out and South Carolina became a royal province.

By the 1750s, rice and indigo had made the planters and merchants of the South Carolina lowcountry the wealthiest men in what would become the United States. Government encouragement of white Protestant settlement in townships in the interior and migration from Pennsylvania, Virginia, and North Carolina were to give the upcountry a different character: smaller farms and a larger percentage of German, Scots-Irish, and Welsh settlers. By 1790, this part of the state temporarily gave the total population a white majority, but the spread of cotton plantations soon again made African American slaves the majority.

Charlestonians were strong supporters of their rights as Englishmen in the Stamp Act crisis in 1765, and South Carolina would play a significant role when differences escalated into the American Revolution. The Charleston merchant Henry Laurens served as President of the Continental Congress in 1777 and 1778.

The first decisive victory of the war was the repulse of a British fleet by patriot defenders in a palmetto log fort on Sullivans Island on June 28, 1776. Over two hundred battles and skirmishes occurred in the State, many of them vicious encounters between South Carolinians who opted for independence and those who chose to remain loyal to King George. Battles at Kings Mountain (1780) and Cowpens (1781) were turning points in the war.


Overview
Several lines of GILLIAMs settled in South Carolina. One was the line of Thomas Gilham of the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. This line characteristically spelt their name Gilham and settled in York county and environs. They were Presbyterian.
Another line of GILLIAMs arrived from the Charlotte County area of Virginia, via Granville County, NC and settled in and around Newberry, SC. This line includes Robert GILLIAM. This line was also Presbyterian.
Another line was that of William GILLIAM. Though he also settled in the Newberry area, this line hailed from Frederick County, VA and was Quaker.


Records on this page include state wide records such as Tax records.



For information on specific counties:


Abbeville County, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Abbeville County, SC


Anderson County, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Abbeville County, SC


Barnwell County, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Abbeville County, SC


Camden District, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Camden District, SC


Cherokee County, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Cherokee County, SC


Craven County, CS
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Craven County, SC


Edgefield County, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Edgefield County, SC


Fairfield County, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Fairfield County, SC


Laurens County, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Laurens County, SC


Newberry County, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Newberry County, SC


Ninety-Six District, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Ninety-Six District, SC


Orangeburg County, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Orangeburg County, SC


Pendleton County, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Pendleton County, SC


Union County, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Union County, SC


York County, SC
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in York County, SC


Topical Records:


Census


Land Grants


Research
The South Carolina Magazine of Ancestral Research


Tax Lists
The following name was gathered from documents at the South Carolina Archives contained in five boxes entitled “Tax Returns 1783—1796.” The list of tax collectors is from a document entitled “Total Amo't of TAXES paid into the TREASURY on account of the year 1784.” The list itself is undated, but internal evidence shews that it was compiled a few years later than 1784. Along with the names of the collectors, this document gives the amount of taxes received in their respective areas and notations concerning the collectors' progress in bringing the monies into the State treasury.
Tax Collectors in 1784
Little River district
Robert Gillam
SCMAR, Vol. III, Winter 1975, No. 1, p. 26


Wills, Estates and Inventories


Sources
  • Wells, Lawrence K, and Brent H. Holcomb, ed.. South Carolina Magazine of Ancestral Research, Vol. 1-20 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 1999. Original data: Wells, Lawrence K., ed.. The South Carolina Magazine of Ancestral Research. Vol. I-XX. Columbia, SC, USA: SCMAR, 1973-1992.