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Probate Records Can Help You Determine Ancestors

Robin Foster
by Robin Foster

We have been identifying the family of Cora Lee Chappelle Vance (1894-1986) who was married to Andrew Lykes Vance (1890-1966). Jan Mitchell-McDermott has once again found the documentation that takes us further back in time. We now have records that reveal her father and grandfather.  We are depending on probate records to show a few clues. The last column on the index above shows George Chappel (sp), colored. This George was Cora’s father. Page 431 is included in Inventories, Appraisements, Sales, 1897-1929 on FamilySearch.org:

 

“South Carolina Probate Records, Bound Volumes, 1671-1977,” images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:939L-JVY4-X?cc=1919417&wc=M6NW-1P8%3A210904901%2C211133801 : 21 May 2014), Laurens > Inventories, Appraisements, Sales, 1897-1929 > image 9 of 286; citing Department of Archives and History, Columbia.

 

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“South Carolina Probate Records, Bound Volumes, 1671-1977,” images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:939L-JVT2-V?cc=1919417&wc=M6NW-1P8%3A210904901%2C211133801 : 21 May 2014), Laurens > Inventories, Appraisements, Sales, 1897-1929 > image 247 of 286; citing Department of Archives and History, Columbia.

 

In the last blog post, we identified George’s death date July 14, 1925, and his name was misspelled the same way as it is in this document. His oldest living son, Wister Chappel (sp) is the Executor. There is more to this probate record in Laurens County Courthouse.

 

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“South Carolina Probate Records, Bound Volumes, 1671-1977,” images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:939L-JF9F-V2?cc=1919417&wc=M6N4-MPF%3A210904901%2C211157601 : 21 May 2014), Laurens > Letters of administration, guardianship, testamentary, 1856-1877 > image 4 of 383; citing Department of Archives and History, Columbia.

 

George Chappel (sp) ( -1874) is the father of George Chappelle (  -1925) and grandfather to Cora Lee Chappelle Vance (1894-1966).  He is listed in the index, Letters of administration, guardianship, testamentary, 1856-1877 on page 615.

Judge Lark made Thomas L. Badgett the administrator of George Chappel’s (sp) ( – 1874) estate. Thomas L. Badgett was also landlord to tenant George Chappel (sp) (  -1874):

 

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“South Carolina Probate Records, Bound Volumes, 1671-1977,” images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:939L-JF98-TF?cc=1919417&wc=M6N4-MPF%3A210904901%2C211157601 : 21 May 2014), Laurens > Letters of administration, guardianship, testamentary, 1856-1877 > image 333 of 383; citing Department of Archives and History, Columbia.

 

The Annual Returns, 1867-1890, on FamilySearch.org had one duplicate which was much easier to read than most other pages. On page 5 below, Mary Chappelle, wife of George Chappel (sp) ( – 1874) deceased, appears as well as Thomas Fuller and Paris Fuller. The Fullers could be related to Sarah Fuller Adams, the mother of Caroline Adams Chappelle. She was the first wife of George Chappelle ( – 1925).

 

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“South Carolina Probate Records, Bound Volumes, 1671-1977,” images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:939L-JPSN-G?cc=1919417&wc=M6NW-668%3A210904901%2C210973101 : 21 May 2014), Laurens > Annual returns, 1867-1890 > image 357 of 613; citing Department of Archives and History, Columbia.

 

Ancestry.com had the probate record for George Chappelle ( – 1874) with Thomas L. Badgett as Administrator.

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

In this probate record is the newspaper notice which was published three times. This gives you another source especially you want to find notices of death, or in this case, a more legible document. We were able to match the death date, July 1874. George did not show up after 1875.

We were able to make out Badgett mentioning George Chappel (sp) (  – 1874) is colored and has wife, Mary, with children. Here is the rest of the probate:

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

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Estate Papers, 1800-1867; General Index to Estate Papers, 1800-1931; Author: South Carolina. Probate Court (Laurens County); Probate Place: Laurens, South Carolina

 

Lastly, this family did not turn up yet in the 1870 US Census, but they were on the 1869 State Census for South Carolina. Only George Chappelle (head of household) is named. In his household were:

2 – number of colored males between 6 and 16 years of age

2 – number of colored females between 6 and 16 years of age

1 – colored males over 21 years of age

6 –  total number of colored males

4 –  total number of colored females

 

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“South Carolina state population schedules, 1869,” images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSLV-K9GX-7?cat=2047647 9 April 2018), Laurens> Horry – Marlboro counties> image 183; citing Department of Archives and History, Columbia.

 

Sharpen the Saw

Wills and probate records are helpful when trying to identify ancestors. Have you come across any wills or probates? Have you looked for a will or probate and discovered one? Let us know in the Facebook Group. It is important that you find all records that you can. Each record helps you to know you have the right people. I cannot wait for next week when we use tax records to identify Cora Lee Chappelle Vance’s father and grandfather.

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