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|Hazard, Perry Co, KY|
The first is an article I alluded to in the Hazard Herald from 50 Years ago. Don't know the date. It has an old picture of Combs graves. The picture is a photo of a newspaper article and not the best. Someone many have the original (perhaps the newspaper archives). The article talks about how Elijah's grave is un-noticed. The photo is (I believe) a photo of my ancestor's tombstones (Judge Josiah Combs and Joseph Eversole who were murdered in the French-Eversole Feud. This was after the other graves were destroyed by development.
I was told Elijah's graves along with those of Jesse (Clerk of Court) Combs were plowed under and were originally along the hillside of Graveyard Hill (where homes and a church and parking lot now stand. I know that Graveyard Hill has houses built on part of it and the graves are scattered across the backyards of the homes (some next to the homes foundations). My ancestors on the top of the hill. After graveyard hill's graves were partially obliterated by development (the church and houses) my great-grandmother paid to have a chain link fence put up around her Mom and Dad and aunt and uncles. Those pictures are below. The graves go all the way to the houses and to the retaining wall of the Consolidated (African-American) church. My great-grandmother did not fence in the entire area - just the area around her immediate family, her parents and grandparents. She left Hazard in the 1930's and when she returned said that Elijah and Jesse's graves with large granite markers were gone.
Submitted by Combs Researcher Commissioner Bill James
Resting Place of Hazard's Founder Goes Unnoticed by Busy Traffic
(The author acknowledges frequent re- ference to "Perry County, Kentucky -- A History," by the Hazard Chapter of D.A.R.)
Noisy city traffic daily goes by the final resting place of Hazard's founder, passing over streets the were nothing but green timberland when Elijah Combs first settled here.
Broadway streets passes close by the small cemetery where Elijah's remains have lain since his death, as it winds up the hill to Hazard´s main resident- ial section. The cemetery, supposeddly one of the oldest in Perry County and certainly the oldest in the city, lies at the top of the hill that overlooks the municiple parking lot behind the Boggs building at the junc- tion of High and Broaddway.
Tradition has it that several veterans of the Revolutionary War also lie there, men who came to the Kentucky mountains seeking their fortune in coal or timber af- ter helping this county win its indepen- dence from Britain.
Came In 1790's
Elijah Combs was one of eight sons of John Combs who came to Perry County with his family by way of Pound Gap in the 1790's, one of the first families to set- tle here. The sons scattered all over the county, with many natural bulding spots close to water and timber available, and Elijah selected the sloping ground by a bend in the Kentucky River as his home site, the same bend that today is spanned by the steel bridge that crosses to the train depot.
Exactly when Elijah built his first house where the rear of the Court House on High Street is, is unknown, but his Virginia wife bore him a son, Jesse, there in 1798. He built a larger house later, a two-story log house closer to the river, about where the Goad Hardware now
Held Most County Offices
This man's energy and resourcefulness did much to establish the tiny community that later grew into the modern city of Haz- ard. He was instrumental in getting the new county of Perry formed, and court was held in his log-house several times. He proved himself an able administrator by holding virtually all county offices at one time or another as Perryv struggled to be- come a substantial organization.
Elijah's grand son, Josiah, also a prom- inent man in late 19th century Hazard, was the man who gave property to the county
for the construction of the first courthouse, and for property as a site for the city when it was first incorporated. Josiah's great granddaughter, Mrs. Fred Gross, lives to- day in the Biggs building near her ances- tor's grave.
Elijah´s wife, Sarah, son Jesse and several of their other children are also buried in the lot, but the graves are mark- ed only by small, rough headstones with- out lettering or dates, making exact iden- tification of the graves difficult.
Some of the cemetery has been dis- turbed by city construction around it, and a portion of it, headstones still visible, is fenced off and grown up with weeds.
Founder's Resting Place
This is the cemetery near Broaddway that is the resting place of Hazard's founder, Elijah Combs. His grave is probably located in the near foreground. The markers in the background have all been put up since 1900.
Judge Josiah H. Combs (son of Jesse Combs, grandson of Elijah Combs)
Susan Combs Eversole (daughter of Judge Josiah H. Combs, granddaughter of Jesse Combs, Great-granddaughter of General Elijah) Buried on Graveyard Hill
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