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Updated 07 Apr 2008
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As is the case with all Combs Research Family Reports, when a source is not specifically referenced herein, the source can be found via a “hot link” to the applicable Combs County of Record, Revolutionary War Pension Files, Bible Records, etc.


Henry Combs, Sr., one of the “eight” (John Combs, Sr., Mason Combs, Sr., John Combs of Richmond, Archdale Combs of Old Rappa), b 1765-1768, probably in Frederick Co, VA; d aft 1848-50, possibly in Greene Co, IN; m (1) 28 Sep 1788, Montgomery Co, VA, Rachael CLEMENTS (d/o Benjamin), b 1771-1773, Virginia; d (probably) 1830-1832, Perry Co, KY; m (2) (possibly on 6 Apr 1832 in Perry Co, KY), Phoebe FRANCIS (no more information).

Henry is documented as a s/o John Combs, Sr. by the Dickey Diary Interviews (which identify him as “one of the eight” Combs brothers of East Kentucky); as well as other implied records (as follow). He was a.k.a. Harry or Harrison Combs according to The Combes Genealogy….

Known Issue of Henry & Rachael CLEMENTS Combs, Sr.
A (Tentative) Chronology of the Life of Henry Combs, Sr.

Known Issue of Henry & Rachael CLEMENTS Combs, Sr.*

*Although Dickey Diary Interviews state that Henry had a “large family” by his second wife, Phoebe FRANCIS, none of those children have been identified as yet.

  1. Matthew Combs Sr. (Henry) was born about 1790 in Virginia. He married 28 May 1810, Clay Co, Kentucky, Frankie BROWN (BROUND), born about 1791 in Georgia. He was taxed in 1817 in Clay Co, Kentucky (not found in 1819). He appeared on the census and was taxed in 1820 in Clay Co, Kentucky. He appeared on the census in 1830 in Perry Co, Kentucky. He appeared on the census in 1840 and 1850 in Breathitt Co, Kentucky. In 1860, Matthew was possibly the “Moses” Combs who is listed in the Morgan Co, KY HH of Isaac B. Combs (s/o Matthew and Frankie BROWN Combs, Sr.), age 72, b NC, blind, along with Frankie (BROWN) Combs, age 69, b GA). He died in 1866 in Breathitt Co, Kentucky. Although the Washington Co, AR Biography of their grandson, Isaac G. Combs (s/o Nathan & Elizabeth CLINE Combs) states that she died in 1868 in Breathitt Co, Kentucky, she appears to have been on the census in 1870 in Lost Creek, Breathitt Co, Kentucky.

The marriage and ancestry of Matthew Combs, son of Henry & Rachel CLEMENTS Combs, Sr., is confirmed by Dickey Diary Interviews, the 1850 Breathitt Co, KY census and the 1860 Morgan Co, KY Census. Matthew is not found in his own household on the 1810 census, and may have been with his wife's family although no James or William BROWN is listed on either the 1810 census or 1811 tax list of Clay. See, however, the 1810 tax list of Floyd Co, KY for 2 James BROWNS (1810 Floyd census not checked yet). See also The Combes Genealogy… as well as the Dickey Diary Interview of Matthew's son, William M. Combs, who confirms Matthew's marriage and states that their children were:

Aaron married Ruth DICKERSON, lived and died in Missouri (See Gentry Co, MO); Alfred m Margaret “Peggy” NOBLE (See Perry Co, KY); Matthew m Sallie WILLIAMS, lived and died in Missouri (See Andrew Co, MO); Henry m Tempie DAVIS (See Breathitt Co, KY); Richard of Montgomery Co, KY m Polly BACK (See Morgan Co, KY); Isaac B. of Wolfe Co, KY, m Louvisa McINTYRE (See Breathitt and Morgan Cos, KY); William M. married Jane Combs, d/o Washington Combs (See Perry and Breathitt Cos, KY); Nathan married Miss (Elizabeth) CLINE (See Washington Co, AR as noted above); Rachael married Isaac BACK of Quicksand (See Breathitt Co, KY).

Note, however, that (1) the Dickey Diary interview of William M. Combs (s/o Matthew) may not state that Frankie was the sister to Nancy BROWN (d/o James BROWN and w/o Matthew's brother Henry, Jr.) and (2) the Sewell S. Combs Manuscript states that Fannie BROWN was the d/o a William BROWN.

  1. Henry Combs Jr. (Henry) was born about 1797 in Holston, Sullivan Co, Tennessee. He was taxed between 1817 and 1820 in Clay Co, Kentucky, and appeared on the census in 1820 in Clay Co, Kentucky. He appeared on the census in 1830-1850 in Perry Co, Kentucky. He died before Feb 1857 in Perry Co, Kentucky. He resided in Big Creek, Perry Co, Kentucky. He was married to Nancy Ann BROWN on 11 Mar 1816 in Clay Co, Kentucky. Nancy Ann BROWN was born in 1796/97 in South Carolina. She appeared on the census in 1860 and 1870 in Perry Co, Kentucky, but is missing (and presumed dead) in 1880. Henry also had two children (Mary “Chaney” Combs & Henry “Big” FIELDS) by Lucy FIELDS (daughter of RW John & Polly FIELDS) who was born in 1805 in Tennessee. Lucy appeared on the census in 1850 in Perry Co, Kentucky. She died between 1850 and 1860. See also Dickey Diary Interviews and The Combes Genealogy….
  2. Elizabeth “Bettie” “Betsy” Combs (Henry) was born about 1798 in Virginia. She appeared on the census in 1850 in Perry Co, Kentucky. She is missing from the 1860 census and presumed dead. She was married to Jeremiah C. “Curly” Combs on 29 May 1810 in Clay Co, Kentucky. Jeremiah Combs was born about 1788 in Virginia. He was taxed in Clay Co, KY beginning in 1809 and appeared on the census in Jun 1810 in Clay Co, Kentucky and again in 1820. He appeared on the census in 1830 to 1850 in Perry Co, Kentucky, but is missing from the 1860 and probably deceased. He was also known as Jeremiah Combs, Jr. The 1833 Perry Co, KY tax list includes Jeremiah C Combs with 50a on Troublesome entered in the name of H. Combs. On 1 June 1833 (Perry Co, KY DBB:6) Jeremiah Combs Curly of Perry Co. deeded to Christopher SIZEMORE for $100, 50a on Troublesome. See also Dickey Diary Interviews and The Combes Genealogy….
  3. Note: Elizabeth's marriage record apparently included no parental consent, yet she is listed on the 1850 Perry census as age 52 (b ca 1798). Is the census record in error or did Jeremiah marry a second Elizabeth?

  4. George Combs (Henry) was born about 1798 in Tennessee. He is missing from the 1830 census, but appeared on the census in 1840 and 1850 in Perry Co, Kentucky. He died after 1850 in Troublesome, Perry Co, Kentucky (missing from 1860 census, presumed dead?). He was married to Nancy SMITH (daughter of Rev. Richard SMITH Sr. and Elitia Combs) in 1821 in Perry Co, Kentucky. Nancy SMITH was born about 1802 in Kentucky. She appeared on the census in 1850 in Perry Co, Kentucky. She may have appeared on the census in 1860 in Perry Co, Kentucky in HH of (her brother?) Josh SMITH. According to The Combes Genealogy…, Nancy had earlier married a J.P. MARTIN.

See also Dickey Diary Interviews.

  1. Stephen Combs (Henry) was born between 1805 and 1810 in Kentucky. He appeared on the census in 1830 in Perry Co, Kentucky. He appeared on the census in 1840 in Breathitt Co, Kentucky. He appeared on the census in 1850 in District 1, Breathitt Co, Kentucky, and also in Perry Co, Kentucky. He appeared on the census in 1860 through 1880 Breathitt Co, Kentucky. He was married to Martha “Patsy” FRANCIS on 22 Apr 1824 in Perry Co, Kentucky. Martha “Patsy” FRANCIS was born between 1800 and 1810 in Virginia. She appeared in Breathitt Co, KY census records through 1900.

See also Dickey Diary Interviews and The Combes Genealogy….

  1. James Combs (Henry) was born between 1808 and 1810 in Kentucky. He appeared on the census in 1830 through 1870 in Perry Co, Kentucky. He was married to Elizabeth (HENRY?) on 22 Apr 1824 in Perry Co, Kentucky. Elizabeth was born between 1810 and 1815 in Kentucky, and also appeared in Perry Co, KY census records through 1870.

See also Dickey Diary Interviews and The Combes Genealogy….

  1. Francis “Frank” Combs (Henry) was born between 1808 and 1818 in Kentucky. He has not yet been located on any 1840 census, but appeared on the census in Perry Co, Kentucky in 1850 and 1860. He is missing from the 1870 census, but appears on the census in 1880 in Perry Co, Kentucky. He was married (1) bef 1841 to Elizabeth “Bettie” OLIVER, born between 1816 and 1819 in Virginia or Kentucky. She appeared on the census in 1850 in Perry Co, Kentucky in his household. She is missing from the 1860 and 1870, but is on the census in 1880 in Breathitt Co, Kentucky. He was married (2) to Polly COUCH (daughter of Marion COUCH and Pattie COUCH ) on 5 Mar 1855 in Perry Co, Kentucky. Polly COUCH was born on 9 Oct 1823 in Virginia. She appeared on the census in 1880 in Perry Co, Kentucky. She died on 27 Jan 1912 in Perry Co, Kentucky.

See also Dickey Diary Interviews and The Combes Genealogy….

  1. Polly Combs (Henry) married Downey STACY according to Dickey Diary Interviews. This couple has been a mystery until recently. Family traditions, combined with records shed more light. A Dec. 10 1852 Breathitt Co. Death Record for one Polly FRANCIS, aged 45; married, father Henry Combs, [not CASSEDY as originally transcribed], place of death Mouth of Buckhorn; birthplace Perry (transcribed by Geneva McKinney). According to Janet V. Neace and confirmed by others, the original record shows the father's name to be Combs instead of CASSEDY. This Polly FRANCIS was born about 1807 per her death record or maybe as late as 1812 per her 1850 Breathitt Co., KY. census record (age 38, wife of William FRANCIS). The family tradition (unconfirmed) per Janet V. Neace is that Polly was married to a STACY but a tall stranger came through and took Mr. STACY's wife. He told his children to let her go and that he hoped she had 3 children… Polly did have triplets by William FRANCIS, born 1837 per their 1850 census record. Her children by William FRANCIS were named Minerva, Mary Ann, and Washington (the triplets), Daniel, Preston, Elizabeth, and Rachel. Note that one Preston Combs, s/o of Mason “8” Combs, married Nancy STACY, d/o of Old Benjamin STACY and Barbara Combs (d/o of John “8” Combs). There is a 29 March 1840 Perry Co., Ky. marriage record for William FRANCIS. The Adam FRANCIS listed in William and Polly's 1850 household might be the same as Adam STACY whose ancestry is unknown but whose family tradition states his mother remarried. He did not get along with his stepfather and he left home and went to Ohio for several years following a fight with his stepfather over some land that had belonged to Adam's father. The reason that Adam FRANCIS and Adam STACY are possibly the same is that there is no later record of an Adam FRANCIS but there is one 1856 Breathitt Co. tax entry for an Adam STACY. While William M. Combs, in his interview with Rev. John J. DICKEY, stated that Polly Combs married Downey STACY, the identity of Downey STACY has also been a mystery. It is now known that Downey Stacy was the same as Felix STACY Sr, s/o of Benjamin STACY SR and Barbara Combs. The 2 Sept 1915 Perry Co, Ky DC for Felix Stacy [Jr] states his father was Downey STACY and Polly Combs. This Felix [Jr] was born 4 Sept 1821. Court records identity Felix [Sr] as a son of Benjamin STACY. The 1830 Perry County tax list entry for Felix STACY shows him living on land entered in the name of H. Combs. It is possible that Felix resided in an area known as Downey Patch or Downey Bottom and therefore became known as Downey Stacy or somehow became confused with the area where he lived. Old Benjamin STACY had several sons whose wives and children are not completely documented. Some have thought Downey Stacy was the same as James Stacy whose wife was named Mary aka Polly per their 1850 and 1860 census records; however, this James and Mary, who separated in 1850, lived next to each other and were enumerated together in the census records. She, according to descendants, was Mary Whitely, d/o of William Whitely and Francis Lee, and she is documented by Perry Co. deeds to be the mother of James Stacy's oldest son, John, b. 1824 which precludes her from being a second wife. An additional Combs FRANCIS connection exists through the apparent second marriage of Rebecca Combs (d/o of Mason “8” Combs) and James FRANCIS. Rebecca and James were also living in Breathitt Co. in 1850.
  2. Winnie Combs (Henry) married John MILLER according to Dickey Diary Interviews. Neither has ever been located.

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A (Tentative) Chronology of the Life of Henry Combs

1765-1768 (probably) Frederick Co, VA. Born: Henry Combs, s/o John (based on probable residence of John Combs at the time).

1787 Montgomery Co, VA. Henry may have been the white male tithable age 17-20 (b 1767-1770) in the Montgomery Co, VA tax listing of his father in 1787. Other records indicate that Henry was b 1765-1768. If he was the tithable in his father's household, that birth years range would adjust to 1767-8, which would “match” the 1789 record below.

1788 Montgomery Co, VA. Personal Property Tax Lists included Henry Combs (this record not viewed so number of tithables, etc. not known).

26 Sept 1788 Montgomery Co VA. Henry Combs m Rachael CLEEMENTS [CLEMENTS], daughter of Benjamin CLEEMENTS who gave consent. Surety for his bond was a Mason Combs who was probably his brother (The Combes Genealogy… states that this Mason was Henry's uncle, but there is no evidence of Mason, Jr. having been in Montgomery County at this time).

26 Dec 1788 Montgomery Co, VA Tax Lists. Henry Combs.

24 Aug 1789 Montgomery Co, VA Tax Lists. Henry is not among the 1789 tithables according to Nettie Schreiner Yantish' “Montgomery Co, VA ca1790.”

1790 Montgomery Co, VA. Tax Lists. Henry Combs, “non-tithable,” but charged with the tax of one white male, age 17-20 (b 1769-1772), who was probably Henry himself. (possibly non-tithable due to being under 21).

1793 Wythe Co, VA. Tax Lists. Henry Combs is listed with one tithe and one horse. Also on this list is (his father-in-law?) Benjamin CLEMMONS [sic].

1794 Wythe Co VA Tax Lists. Henry Combs is listed as tithing one on a tax list which Researcher Jeff Weaver indicates covered that part of Wythe which is present-day Wythe and Smythe Cos, VA.

1795 Grayson Co, VA. Tax List. Henry Combs. Note: Unlike his brother, Mason, Henry did not live in that part of Wythe which became Grayson in 1794. His appearance on this Grayson tax list indicates a move.

1797-8 Sullivan Co, TN. Henry Combs was residing in or near Sullivan Co, TN based on Dickey Diary Interviews, and the birth location of his sons, Henry Combs, Jr. and George Combs.

1807-1820 Clay Co, KY. Henry was residing in Clay based on tax lists (1807-1811, 1813-14, 1817-1820) and census records (1810 and 1820).

1830 Perry Co, KY. Census. Henry Combs.

6 Apr 1832. Perry Co, KY. Henry may have been the same who m on this date according to the Perry Co, KY Groom's Index. His second wife was Phoebe FRANCIS (Dickey Diary Interviews).

by 1837-1838 Indiana. Henry and his second family were residing in Indiana according to Dickey Diary Interviews. Although The Combes Genealogy… posits Johnson Co, IN, he is not known to have ever resided in that county (see following).

1840 Greene Co, IN Census Index. One Henry Combs is listed adjacent to a William Combs who may have been William Byrom Combs (See also Vigo Co, IN)

1848 East Kentucky. Henry returns home for a visit according to Dickey Diary Interviews (at age 80ish?).

1850 Greene Co, IN. A Henry Combs, b ca 1772, South Carolina [sic], is enumerated with what may have been a third wife (Yenah?), and numerous children. It also appears that Henry's brother, Biram, was in Greene Co, IN, and if this is Henry: WOW!!! (Great Work, Debi Houser!)

Research in progress…

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