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|The James W. Combs Letters|
of 1811 & 1819
Including references to Combs & Combs-Associated Families (OVERSTREET, WILSON plus) in Anderson, Campbell, Davidson and Jefferson Cos TN, plus “clues” toward Combs & Associated Families in (possibly) Allen & Barren Cos KY; Camden & Ray Cos MO, and more…
New! A marriage record for Lewis and Nancy Combs Overstreet has been located in Halifax Co, VA, dated 11 Aug 1803. Unfortunately, the source is published and highly reliable (research in progress). If, however, the location is correct, this record links this Combs Family to that of (a) George & Phebe Combs of Amelia and Halifax Cos, VA, parents of Judah Combs who m Jesse DODSON, who were in Grainger Co, TN (parent county of Anderson and Campbell); (b) probable close kin to the John & Sarah MABRY Combs Family of Jefferson and Grainger Cos, TN; and (c) the Combs of Wilkes Co, GA (see below). See John Combs I of Amelia Co, VA.
Updated 05 Feb 2009
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From Combs Researchers Joan Beyers, Seal Beach, CA & Michael R. Wilson, documentation that the following Combs were siblings:
- James W. Combs
- Martha Combs (1787-1883) married Levi WILSON - went to Ray County, Missouri in 1829
- Sarah Combs married Eli WILSON - went to Ray County, Missouri in 1829
- __________ Combs married Lewis OVERSTREET
- Nancy Combs (may be the sister who married Lewis OVERSTREET)
LETTER #1 From James Combs to Levi WILSON, Campbell Co, TN
July the 27th 1811
Ornered brother and sister I take this opertunity of writing to you to let you know that I am in a very grate state of health at presents hoping that these few lines may find you all in the same state of health. I have nothing very strange to inform you of. I am still living with Dr. McCRACKEN and we agree exceding well and I do not expect to come back to that countrey untill about this time next year and then I will come if posable nomore but with esteem.
Your most obedient and umble servant
(Addressed to: Mr. Levi WILSON Campbell County Tennessee)
Scribbles on the back of letter: Politiness of W. A. DAVID. Isaac WILSON (written several times).
LETTER #2 from James W. Combs, Nashville, Davidson Co, TN to Levi WILSON, Campbell Co, TN
December 7th 1819
I this day arived in this place from New York. I am traveling over the country to find a good place to settle myself in. I am nearer to you now than I have been before in several years - you will perhaps think it strange if I should go further off and not pay you a visit, it is however totaly inconvenient for me to visit you before I have made a final settlement which I shall do as soon as is possible. I have but little to write you now. I am in perfect good health and cannot complain of my circumstances. I have not heard from you in a long time. The last letter which I rec'd was one from Sister Nancy sometime last spring which was the first news I had of the health of Ely WILSON or the desertion of Lewis OVERSTREET news which were extreemly mortifying to me; I hope my Sister will bear their misfortunes with fortitude remembering that there are thousands in much worse than they are. My Sister may be assured that I feel every possible affection for them and should be very happy to visit them could I make it consistent with my business at present. However I cannot nor can I say when I can make it convenient. I intend shortly to propose a settlement with John McCRACKIN if I can effect a settlement with him on such terms as I can afford I shall feel myself freed from a very great embarrisment, if I cannot effect such a settlement I will stand him a lawsuit. I know I have every advantage of him at the law but I do not wish to take that course to settle the business but at all events I am resolved to have the business settled as soon as possible -am inhopes that he will be sensible of the advantage which I have of him and will be willing to settle on such terms as I shall be able to offer. If he should however commence a suit against me there shall be no advantage neglected on my part - I have no more to write at present. I hope these few lines will find you all enjoying good health and quietness of mind and be assured that I remain your sincere friend.
James W. Combs
Letter Postmarked: Nashville [Davidson Co], Tennessee
Addressed to: Mr. Levi WILSON
Jackborough, Campbell County
Additional Notes: Eli and Levi WILSON and Lewis OVERSTREET (all married to sisters of James W. Combs) are found on the 1802 Anderson Co TN Tax List and then on the 1818 Campbell Co TN (formed from Anderson) tax list (no Combs). Some of the following records apply directly to the above parties; others are “clues.” No James W. Combs is found in the records of TN until 1830 when a James W. Combs, attorney, is found in Giles Co, TN.
1802 Anderson Co TN (created in Nov 1801 from Knox and Grainger Cos)
“A List of Taxable Property and Polls in Capt. LINVILL'S Compy taken by R. POLLOCK Esquire 1802” [later Campbell Co TN]
Andrew COPE [See both 1820 Clay Co KY & Warren Co TN Census Records & Tax Lists]
Andrew, David, John & Reuben CURNUTT [See RW Wm. CORNETT]
“A List of Taxable Property & Polls in Capt. GEORGE STELLES Compy as returned by R. POLLOCK Esqr. for the year 1802”
Notes: Job Combs is earlier found on the 1800 Jefferson Co TN Tax List as is a John Combs. All are in hopes of learning more about this Combs Line: Job may have been the same who came to East TN from New Jersey to Shenandoah Co VA. John died ca1808 in Jefferson Co TN, the h/o Sarah MABRY whom he married in 1772 in Guilford Co NC (See both John & Sarah MABRY Combs and the Carlton Combs Letter)
1818 Campbell Co TN Tax Lists [Created
1806 from Anderson & Claiborn, but first extant lists in 1818]
“List Returned by Joseph PETERSON Esqr.”
John ROARK, 25 acres on Coal Creek by Deed & 1 wp.
John ROARK, Jr. , 1 wp
Joshua ROARK 50 acres & 1 wp
Eli WILSON, 95 acres by Deed & 1 w. poll [See Ray Co MO]
“Returns Made by Thos. MOAD Esquire”
John RICHARDSON, 1 w.p.
Amus RICHARDSON, 100 acres, 0 wp.
Wynant VANDERPOOL, 1 wp [See Ray Co MO]
Anthony VANDERPOOL, 137 acres, 1 w.p.
Isaac WILSON, 1 wp
Levy WILSON, 1 wp
“Extra Returns for the Year 1818”
(Early East TN Taxpayers, Polly Creekmore)
Notes: See Combs-ROARK Families of Hawkins Co TN & Perry Co KY (where Combs-Richardson & Combs-Wilsons are also found) and see Amos RICHARDSON & John Combs of Wilkes Co GA. See VANDERPOOLS to Ray Co MO
1822 Jefferson Co TN
Joseph Combs [s/o John & Sarah MABRY Combs]
1823 Campbell Co TN
1825 Monroe Co TN
1830 Campbell Co TN Census
L12 Joel MEADOR 00011001-0322101
L13 Jason MEADOR 00001-20001
L07 Eli WILSON 00100001-002001
L08 Anderson REYNOLDS 20001-00001
L09 Amos RICHARDSON 000020001-000120001
Sources: Early East TN Taxpayers, Polly Creekmore; Early TN Tax Lists, Sistler; 1830 East TN Census, Sistler, Nashville TN
Note: The 1820 US Census is not extant for most of East TN, and no James W. Combs is found in the remainder of TN in 1820. It is not until 1830 that we have a complete census for TN, and the only James W. Combs found then is in Giles Co TN down in south central TN on the present day Alabama state line (listed on p. 133): 100001-22001 (1830 Census of East TN, Sistler) with no recognizably familiar names near his.
Re Amos RICHARDSON & the MEADORS, see also Wilkes Co GA where John, Jonas & Jason MEADOR are listed on a ca 1785 tax list near a John Combs who was trustee for land of an Amos RICHARDSON. Two Amos RICHARDSON'S were RW Pensioners however, both appear to have been probably related based on migratory patterns:
(1) RICHARDSON, Amos. NC Line. Soldier lived in Burke Co, NC at enl, soldier appl 1 Sep 1832 Campbell Co TN aged 70, soldier was b in 1762 in Bedford Virginia; soldier married Fanny FARMER 17 Dec 1840 [ch: apparently a 2nd marriage?] & soldier d 2 May 1853, wid applied 3 Jan 1854 Campbell Co, TN aged 65, soldier & his 2nd wife Fanny had no children, a Thomas RICHERSON [sic] had signed m bond with the Rev soldier Amos “RICHERSON” in Anderson Co TN on 11 Dec 1840, children of soldier & his 1st wife were mentioned, but no namese were given. (RW Pension File W8552, White's RW Pens Abstracts)
(2) RICHARDSON, Amos. NC Line. Soldier was born 18 Sep 1764 in Loudoun Co, Virginia & he lived on the headwaters of the Holston River in NC which is now in TN & afterwards lived in Bedford County Virginia for 1 year, then moved to Union Dist, SC, for 5 years, then moved to Elbert GA where he appl. 19 Sep 1832. (RW Pension File S31932, White's RW Pens Abstracts)
Notes: Also of particular interest in regard to these records is that according to a letter by his grandson, Carlton Combs, the John Combs of the 1800 Jefferson Co TN tax list had two brothers who removed to Georgia. (See Wilkes GA)
In Ray Co, MO are found not only Eli and Levi WILSON, but Andrew Jackson Combs (s/o John & Lydia Combs of Montgomery Co KY). Lewis OVERSTREET is not found on the 1830 Census; however, there is are two Lewis OVERSTREETS on the 1840 Census Index: Casey Co, KY and Bedford Co VA. There are also several Nancy OVERSTREETS on the 1840 Census: Owen Co IN; Breckenridge Co, KY; and a Nancy H. OVERSTREET in Jessamine Co KY.
Kincaid Cemetary, Ray Co, MO
Enumerated by Combs Researcher Michael R. Wilson. 1 1/2 miles south of Knoxville on Hwy 13, to Road 184 (gravel). East on Road 184 one mile to Dockery Road. Turn north and go 1/4 to Vandiver. The Cemetery is located 20 feet past the intersection of Dockery and Vandiver, Ray County, Missouri. It is an active cemetery and welll kept. You do not need to take a weed-eater but do check for ticks when you get home. A tree was planted next to the W.S. & Lucretia monument. Big mistake!
Levi WILSON has a common marker with his son Solomon C. WILSON. Marker indicates that Solomon died 20 JUL 1859, 35 years, 5 months and 23 days. Bottom of monument says “purchased by J.W.C. WILSON.”
Martha [Combs] Wilson, wife of Levi WILSON, died 11 March 1883, age 95 years, 6 months. She has a common marker with her sister, Sarah (Combs) Wilson, and next to Levi WILSON her husband. “Sarah WILSON, wife of Eli WILSON, died 18 JAN, 1870, age 95 years and 5 months.”
No monument in the cemetery for Eli WILSON.
The next monument is marked William S. WILSON, son of Levi and Martha WILSON, March 18, 1805. This is a common marker with his brother James W. C. WILSON, son of Levi and Martha WILSON, 16 FEB 1808 - 23 AUG 1901. Bottom of the marker has the following: “Emigrated to Missouri in 1829.”
These three markers are all of the same type and material. All three are in good condition. Levi WILSON/Solomon WILSON monument is tilting due to ground heave. In front of these three markers are the following stones:
W.S. WILSON, 18 MAR 1805 - 23 APR 1900 (and) Lucretia his wife, 26 JUL 1847 - 7 JUN 1919. Next to this marker is James E. WILSON, 1894 - 1926. This is a single flat stone. Both are in great condition.
Someone has recently placed plastic flowers on all of these graves. The flowers were of the same design and colors - most likely the same person or family.
To Be Continued…
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