Estates consist of records documenting property formerly owned by a decedent. Estates may include appointments and renunciations of executors and administrators; administrators' and guardians' bonds; inventories; accounts of sale; annual accounts; final settlements; civil actions and executions involving administrators, executors, and guardians; and actions in equity or special proceedings involving property of an estate. Guardians' papers are also often filed with the estate of the deceased rather than with the guardians' records.
Descriptions of original estates records held by the State Archives are summarized in the online MARS catalog. For a summary of original estates records and microfilm held by the the State Archives of North Carolina, please see the Guide to County Records. Partial or complete lists of estates also exist for select counties.
Estates records may also be available on third party websites. The State Archives provides links to many of these collections in its Digital Collection.