Answered By: Margaret Dunlap
Last Updated: Dec 04, 2018     Views: 18

You can research your Columbia-area house history in a few ways. First, do a search on your address in South Carolina Historical Newspapers. Sign in with your Richland Library card # and PIN at the link provided (found in the Research & Learn portion of our website under Genealogy & Local History), then click The State Collection to search in the local newspapers, going back to 1891. Enter your address in "quotes" and then filter your results by oldest first to get the first instance of your house listed in the paper, usually its construction or sale. Look through other results to find more changes in ownership. If you do  not have a Richland Library card then you can do this research at the library.

After doing a newspaper search, come to the Walker Local & Family History Center, located on the first floor of the Main Library, to look through the Columbia City Directories. The directories allow you to look up an address to find the occupant, and our collection spans from 1859 to current, with only a few gaps in years.

Once you have a list of occupants, look for a publication date for their obituaries or other related articles in the Local History & Obituary Index. This will help you find materials in the Local History clipping files or in the historic newspapers.

Finally, look for photographs in the Local History Digital Collections. Search by street name, neighborhood name, or an occupant's name to see if we have any historic images of your home. Finding photographs of homes in suburban Columbia is kind of a long shot, but we have many images of the downtown Columbia area and a fairly good collection of the surrounding areas. We also have historic maps, ledgers, pamphlets and other unique materials in the digital collection that may help you research a historic home. The city's Plumbing Inspections and Building Permit ledgers in particular can help you find a construction date for a home in Columbia built between 1921 and 1954.

We wish you luck in discovering the history of your home.