San Luis Obispo
Genealogical Society

  San Luis Obispo

SLO Civil Cases

SLOCGS was privileged to be able to scan 84 rolls of filmed Civil Case Files.


Thank~You's !
Ginny Hall and her Staff at the SLO Superior Court, for finding the 'lost Civil Case Films'

The Volunteer Abstractors: Joyce Bayless, Dianna Curtis, Julie George, Mary Hansen, Rich Miller, Greg Pisaño, Ingrid Penman, Laurie Pudwill,  Vickie Valenzuela


 The Master Index can be found here.
 Individual Case files are available. Contact the SLOCGS Librarian

Case Files that are ordered from SLOCGS will only be available in the following format:

"Raw Data" - Scanned images that are not rotated or enhanced. The Pages were not always filmed with the orientation consistent, many of them were filmed upside down, and all of them were reversed. For Abstracting purposes, the pages had to be rotated and in some cases split out from the original scan. The number of Pages per File can be sent to you prior to ordering so that you will know the cost per Case. The majority of the Cases are less than 50 Pages


Documents ~ Explanations

The Superior Court handles civil, criminal, small claims, and traffic courts for the County of San Luis Obispo and the State of California.


The 16mm rolls of microfilm that the Supervisor of the Superior Court located and loaned to SLOCGS for digitizing contain documents of Civil Cases. These Cases were filmed in the early 1970's, but the latest dates we find are in the early 1950's.


The type of Case varies widely as do the number of pages per file. Some Cases may contain as few as two documents, while others could contain over a thousand.


So far, we have found Property Disputes, Divorces, Personal Injury, Corporate vs Individuals, Water Right Disputes, Insolvency, and Guardianships. We have also found single Case Documents that appear to be a listing of filings that pertain to Adoptions. These single, hand written pages do not have the name of the adoptive parents, just the name of the child and the Attorney who is representing the child.  We do not know if the name on the file is the birth name or the adopted name. Here is a website that explains California Adoption Laws


An explanation of the data presented in the Index: Information of a Genealogical nature is the focus of the abstracting process. We are not interested in the resolution of the cases, but it is something that might be of value to a Researcher. The Index is sorted by Plaintiff. The Names represented in the Witness column is not alphabetical, they are listed in the order found in the Documents.


The Index contains the following information:

Number of the Roll of Film and Case Number

Names of both Plaintiff and Defendants [John and Jane Doe are not included nor are Corporations where the specific name is unknown]

Type of Case

Many of the Names in the documents are hand written and difficult to decipher. If we cannot figure out a name we used the following formula: Sm?th, Ja?ob - where the question mark represents a letter that cannot be clearly read. We do not attempt to correct mis-spelled names, nor do we guess at what a name might be.


The quality of the film varies widely. Once the images are digitized and saved as jpeg's, they are rotated and a simple enhancement is done. For abstraction purposes, the images are not straightened. The Files are also converted to pdf's so that the Abstractor can go through a whole file without having to task back and forth through jpeg images. The very early Case Files are hand written documents.


Simple questions about the process can be answered, but until all the abstracting is complete, we have no way of knowing the Individuals involved, nor the type of Case.

Site Updated: 27 October 2015
This Site belongs to SLOCGS