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The following report on the descendants of William Jefferson Combs and Sarah Elizabeth BAKER was provided by Combs Researcher Phyllis Combs who continued the research of her mother Freda Cohoon Warren and compiled the descendant information given below. Phyllis Combs has also provided this information to the Broderbund Family Archive #110, Vol. 1, Ed. 6, Social Security Death Index: U.S., Date of Import: Oct 16, 1999, Internal Ref. #1.111.6.45987.41

New! Additional information on William Jefferson Combs' parents Alfred and Mary Ann “Polly” REASONS Combs.


William Jefferson COMBS was born 1841 in TN, and died 1929 in Dyer County, TN. He married Sarah Elizabeth BAKER (born in 1850 in TN) on March 15, 1869 in Dyer County, TN. William lived in Gibson Co, TN before moving to Dyer Co. by 1880. W. J. Combs was a soldier in the Confederate Army. He was a private and enlisted March 24, 1862, Company B, 47th TN Inf. CSA. He is buried in the Bowen Chapel Cemetery, Dyer County, Tennessee with his wife Sarah Elizabeth BAKER who died 1919 in Dyer Co., TN. Both William Jefferson Combs and Sarah Elizabeth BAKER were born in TN. Their five children were also born in TN. William's Mother was Mary Ann “Polly” REASONS, daughter of George and Dicey RHODES REASONS. Mary Ann married Alfred Combs, father of William J. 25 Sep 1838 in Madison Co, TN. Alfred and Mary Ann REASONS Combs were both born in North Carolina.


Alfred and Mary Ann “Polly” REASONS Combs moved from Madison Co, TN to Gibson Co, TN at the death of Mary Ann's father George REASONS, who drown in the Middle Fork of the Forked Deer River, August 11, 1842. The REASONS had moved to Gibson Co, TN from Wayne Co, North Carolina.

Betsy REASONS, sister to Mary Ann REASONS Combs, married William S. CHERRY 1851 in Gibson Co, TN.

Betsy's Husband William S. CHERRY shot Alfred Combs sometime before April 07, 1859 when CHERRY was convicted of the manslaughter death of Alfred Combs. CHERRY was sentenced to a term of 3 years, age 29, birth place Tennessee. Discharged January 31, 1862.
Notes: Pardoned under act of 1836. In Prison ledger 86 as number 2003. Additional information found in ledger 87. CHERRY, William S., born and raised in Madison Co. Father dead, mother lives in Madison Co. Has a wife and two children in Gibson Co. Has, two brothers and two sisters living. #519 Gen 976.8 sh57 Vol. 2 “Tennessee Convicts” Early Records of the State Penitentiary 1850-1870.

It's told among the HOPPERS, when CHERRY was released from prison, Dicey REASONS offered CHERRY 50 cents and a bottle of whiskey if he'd leave the area. CHERRY's farm was in Madison Co. He must have been slipping back to visit Betsy because Betsy started having babies again. Betsy obviously wasn't living with William CHERRY because of this found Deed.


ID: I1119
Name: William S. CHERRY
Sex: M
Birth: ABT. 1832 in TN
Death: BET. 1866 - 1870 in Madison or Gibson Co., TN
Note: Madison Co., TN Deed Book 24

WILLIAM S. CHERRY “on condition that my wife ELIZABETH CHERRY will come home to my house & live with me” conveyed all his growing crop, along with other personal property to her. Sept. 22, 1866. Reg Sept. 22, 1866. No wits.


Marriage 1 Elizabeth "Betsy" REASONS b: 6 JUN 1835 in Wayne Co, NC
Married: 31 Aug 1851 in Gibson Co., TN

It is told among the family that Mary Ann “Polly” REASONS Combs carried her husbands bloody shirt with her bible and preached against the evils of drink after Alfred's death.


William Combs, age 18, is living with his mother, widow Mary Combs in Gibson Co, TN in 1860 and then Mary is living with William and Sarah per the 1870 Gibson Co, TN census. Mary Combs is Polly Combs, wife of Alfred Combs of the 1850 Gibson Co, TN census with a W. Combs, age 7.

1860 GIBSON COUNTY, TN - Census

District No. 16 Gadsden

2316 2341 Combs Mary 36 F Farmer 500 400 N. C. 4 year of school
Combs Wm. 18 M TN
Combs Elnay 14 F TN
Combs Aslia 10 M TN

William Jefferson Combs and Sarah Elizabeth BAKER - Marriage license records; March 15, 1869 Dyersburg, Dyer County, Tennessee

1870 GIBSON COUNTY, TN - Census

District No. 16 Gadsden

Combs, W. J, age 28 Born TN
Sarah Age 20 Born TN
Jamie Age 7 Months Born TN
Mary age 46 Born NC

Center Cemetery, Crockett County, TN

Mrs. Mary Combs Born June 02, 1823 ­ Died July 27, 1899

Roots Web’s World Connect Project: Families and Sojourners of Dyer County, TN
!D 159640 is not correct. Not Sarah J. Baker born 1849 NC

Notes for William “Whistling Bill” Jefferson Combs

"1891 Census" Dyer County lists W J Combs as 49 which means the census was taken before W. J. Combs's birthday, and his son J. W. Combs age 21.

More about William Jefferson COMBS:

Combs, W. J. Pvt. enlisted March 24, 1862. Company B, 47th TN Inf. CSA
Burial: Bowen Chapel Cemetery, Dyer County, Tennessee

More About Sarah Elizabeth BAKER:

1870 Census District 16, Gibson Co. TN. 107-108
1880 District 2, Dyer Co. TN P. 18D
1900 Census District 1, Dyer Co. TN page 9B (image 19)
Burial: Bowen Chapel Cemetery, Dyer County, Tennessee
Born 1850 TN. Died 1919 Dyer Co. TN.

Issue of William Combs and Sarah Elizabeth Baker

  1. James W. COMBS, b. 1870, Gadsden , Gibson County, TN; d. October 10, 1932, Memphis, Shelby County, TN.
  2. Addry COMBS, (Mary Adria) b. December 19, 1876, TN; d. June 20, 1944, Dyer County, TN.
  3. Cordeila COMBS, Cordy B.) b. September 04, 1880, TN; d. January 1978, Ripley, TN.
  4. William Jay COMBS, (Jay) b. 1881, Dyer County, TN; d. September 23, 1917, Dyer County, TN.
  5. Finis Twilight COMBS, (Mr. Twid) b. October 15, 1885, TN; d. March 12, 1971, Baltimore, Baltimore County, MD.

More about: Children of William COMBS and Sarah BAKER

Roots Web’s World Connect Project: Families and Sojourners of Dyer County, TN
!D 159640 is not correct. Joseph A. Combs b July 1869 in Dyer Co. TN is not their son. They got their license to marry on March 15, 1869, which leaves Joseph being born some 4 months later. Also Ellen Combs born 1872 in Dyer Co. TN is not their child either.


James W. COMBS was born 1870 in Gadsden, Gibson County, TN, and died October 10, 1932 in Memphis, Shelby County, TN. He married CLARA M. CLARK, daughter of John Clark and Mary E.

Notes for James W. Combs

James was a merchant and owned a grocery store in Trenton, Gibson County, Tennessee. James son, Jim Baker Combs and my father-in-law and James younger brother, Finis Twilight 'Twid' Combs were both clerking at the drug store, according to the "January 10, 1920 Census" Gibson County, Tennessee, Supervisors district 9, Enumeration District 49, sheet 10A , Page 268, of the 7th civil district

Individual: Clark, Clara
Social Security #: 415-48-3085
Issued in: Tennessee
Birth date: Dec 7, 1884
Death date: Jan 1975
Residence code: Tennessee - ZIP Code of last known residence: 38063
Primary location associated with this ZIP Code: Ripley, Tennessee

Clara Clark came from a great and loving family. So loving in fact that two Combs sisters, Addry and Cordy married into the same Clark family of brothers Jessie Francis Clark and William A. Clark And their brother James W. Combs married Jessie and William’s sister Clara Clark. Their kids were all (triple cousins?)

Issue of James Combs and Clara Clark

  1. Bessie Combs, b. 1900.
  2. Lurline Irene Combs, b. 1902; m. John Elb. SAWYERT, 1919.
  3. James Baker Combs, b. 1905; d. July 23, 1920, Memphis, Shelby County, TN.
  4. Corrine Combs, b. 1907.
  5. Robert Lee Combs, b. September 02, 1913; d. April 1982, Gibson County, TN; m. Susan Emily JACKSON, 1938.

Notes for Robert Lee Combs

Roots Web’s World Connect Project: Families and Sojourners of Dyer County, TN
!D 1101528 I believe to be incorrect. There appears to be two Combs families, maybe related? Bowen Chapel Cemetery, Dyer Co. TN lists a Ruby Emily Combs born April 9, 1896 Died November 30, 1896. Daughter of J. A. and R. C. Combs. Beside her grave is Ruby Guide Combs born 1850 died 1919 ­ wife of J. A. Combs.


Addry COMBS was born December 19, 1876 in TN, and died June 20, 1944 in Dyer County, Tennessee. She married (1) Jesse F. CLARK, son of J. CLARK and Mary E. December 30, 1900 in Dyer County, TN Jesse Francis CLARK, Born March 2, 1872 died Jan. 9, 1952

More About Addry (Mary Adria) COMBS:

Burial: Bowen Chapel Cemetery, Dyer Co., TN

More About Jesse Francis Clark:

Burial: Bowen Chapel Cemetery, Dyer Co., TN

Issue of Addry Combs and Jesse Clark

  1. Jack Clark
  2. Harold Hick Clark
  3. Gerald Clark
  4. Eldon Clark, b. May 26, 1916; d. December 09, 1987, Friendship, Crockett County, TN.

Cordeila COMBS was born September 04, 1880 in TN and died January 1978 in Ripley, Tennessee13,13. She married William A. Clark February 03, 1897 in Dyer County, TN, son of J. Clark And Mary E..

Individual: Combs, Cordella
Social Security #: 414-84-5089
Issued in: Tennessee
Birth date: Sep 4, 1880
Death date: Jan 1978
ZIP Code of last known residence: 37601
Primary location associated with this ZIP Code: Johnson City, Tennessee

More About WILLIAM A. CLARK:

Burial: Belle Vernon Cemetery
William A. Clark - obit. Crockett County Sentinel Vol. 77 Number 15, Thursday, August 4, 1949 ­ Death ­ Funeral services for Wm. A. Clark, who died Friday at St. Mary’s Hospital, Humbolt, were held Saturday at the Holmes Funeral Home in Trenton. He was 80, born near Friendship, Crockett County, Tennessee. He leaves his wife, two sons, Howard Clark of Doyleston, Pa. and King Clark of Trenton; daughter, Mrs Tom Hagerdorn of Memphis; three brothers, Jesse Clark, of Tigrett, John Clark of Friendship, and Ira Clark of Memphis; five sisters, Mrs. Mollie Smith, Mrs. J. W. Combs, Mrs. Nannie Jones and Miss Ella Clark, all of Memphis and Mrs. J. Franklin Miller, of Pittsburg, Pa.

Belle Vernon Cemetery
Also Mother ­ Mary E Clark born 1847 Died 1928
Brother - Ira born 1883 died 1968
Sister - Ella born 1874 died 1973
And Brother John

John L. Clark ­ obit. Crockett County Sentinel Vol. 77 Number 16, Thursday, August 11, 1949 Bell, Tennessee. ­ death ­ Funeral services were held Sunday at the Methodist Church in Friendship for John L. Clark who died Saturday at Western State Hospital. Burial in Bellevernon Cemetery. He was born in Friendship and lived in this community practically all his life. He was devoted to his mother, the late Mary Clark and family, following the death of his father, he was head of the house for a number of years. He leaves five sisters, Mrs. Mollie Smith, Mrs. J. W. Combs, Mrs. Nannie Jones and Miss Ella Clark, all of Memphis and Mrs. J. Franklin Miller, of Pittsburg, Pa., and two brothers, Jesse Clark of Tigrett and Ira Clark of Memphis.

Issue of Cordeila Combs and William Clark

  1. Williebelle Clark, m. Tom Hagerdorn
  2. King Clark
  3. Harold Clark
  4. J. C. Clark
  5. Howard Clark

William Jay COMBS was born 1881 in Dyer County, Tennessee, and died September 23, 1917 in Dyer County, Tennessee. He married Dora Carpenter December 27, 1909 in Dyer County, Tennesse.

More About WILLIAM JAY COMBS:

Burial: Bowen Chapel Cemetery, Dyer County, Tennessee

More About DORA CARPENTER:

Burial: Bowen Chapel Cemetery, Dyer County, Tennessee
Dora Carpenter born 1889 No date For Death.

Issue of William Combs and Dora Carpenter

  1. Edward Combs

Finis Twilight COMBS was born October 15, 1885 in TN, and died March 12, 1971 in Baltimore, Baltimore County, Md.. He married 1st Pearl M. Glenn January 21, 1909 in Dyer County, TN. He married 2nd Robbie Maifare Minton June 07, 1924 in Dyersburg, Dyer County, Tennessee, daughter of John Minton and Elizabeth Nesha.

Notes for Finis Twilight (Mr. Twid) Combs

Social Security #: 410-14-6437 - Issued in: Tennessee Jan. 1937 Soc. Sec. Appl. lists Father ­ William Jefferson Combs ­ Mother Sarah Elizabeth Baker
Residence code: Maryland
ZIP Code of last known residence: 21220
Primary location associated with this ZIP Code: - Baltimore, Maryland
Birth date: Oct 15, 1885
Death date: Mar 1971 was blind at birth and had been since 1964 0r 65.

In the "1910 census", Twid Combs is listed as Finis T. Combs a 26 year old farmer with his wife Pearl M. (Glenn) 22 years old. It was the thirteenth Census of the United States page #178, Supervisors district 1, Enumeration district 5, sheet #5A in I believe Dyer County Tennessee.

James W. Combs older brother of Finis, was a merchant and owned a grocery store in Trenton, Gibson County, Tennessee. "1920 Census"

James son, Jim Baker Combs and my father-in-law and James younger brother, Finis Twilight 'Twid' Combs were both clerking at the drug store, according to the January 10, 1920 Gibson County, Tennessee Census, Supervisors district 9, Enumeration District 49, sheet 10A , Page 268, of the 7th civil district, Twid Combs is listed as being 35 and his son Glenn age 7. Twid's wife Pearl had died by this time just a few months prior to the 1920 Census, on August 6, 1919.

"1930 Census", Dyer County, Tennessee Finis Combs is listed as Combs, (Twid?) FT age 42 a worker at the Cotton Gin. His wife Robbie 28 years of age, Finis (Glen) Combs, son, 18 years of age, Tommy, a son 5years of age and another son Willie 3 years of age. The Census taker must not have heard the last name right as his name is Billie Cody Combs. Bobby Gene Combs, my husband and Twid's fourth son was born after the Census was taken that year on November 21

More About Pearl M Glenn

Burial: Bowen Chapel Cemetry, Dyersburg, Tennessee

Notes for Robbie Maifare Minton

Robbie Maifair Minton married Finis T. Combs June 07, 1924


Added notes by Phyllis Combs: Robbie Maifare Minton 2. wife of Finis Twilight Combs - John H. and Elizabeth M. Minton. See Dyer Co. Tn 1920 Census District 12 - Crockett Co. Tn 1930 Census and Crocket Co. TN Friendship (Sudbury Cemetery records - John H. Minton b. July 1872 TN. d. April 1945 - Elizabeth M. Minton b. November 1878 TN d. March 1946 - Son M. C. Minton b. November 1912 d. September 1942

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