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Delaware was first part of Maryland with the first colonization by the British in 1637 in Maryland's original St. Mary's County. In 1642, Delaware became part of Maryland's Kent County, and in 1662, part of Talbot County. In 1666, Somerset County was established from non-county area, then Durham from Somerset and non-county. In 1673, the Dutch established courts at Upland, New Amstel and Hoarkill, and in 1677, New Amstel's name was changed to New Castle. In 1678, New Castle gained from Upland, and in 1680, St. Jones (changed to Kent in 1682) was established from New Castle and Hoarkill. In 1681, Hoarkills' name was changed to [New] Deal (changed to Sussex in 1682), and Upland abolished as a result of the establishment of Penn's Colony (Pennsylvania) when Delaware was acquired by William PENN from the Duke of York. In 1685, a Royal Decision was issued dividing Maryland and Delaware. In 1687, Kent gained from Sussex, and in 1707, Delaware, as the "three lower counties," gained self-rule from Pennsylvania. In 1760, the Maryland-Delaware line was re-defined, and in 1775, Sussex gained from Kent, Delaware's three counties extended their lines west to the Maryland line. In 1841, Kent gained from New Castle.


Note: Delaware has not been actively researched as yet. The following are records transcribed by Combs Researcher Denise Mortorff who collected these while working on another project. No more information is available at this time. See also a few additional records below.

Delaware Tax List

Transcribed by Combs Researcher Denise Kelly Mortorff

Introduction: Film numbers are from the LDS Family History Center microfilm collection. Please keep in mind I was not searching directly for COMBES, so could have made errors and would strongly urge other researchers to validate this information if they believe this may be a part of their direct lineage.

Delaware, like Maryland uses the geographic grouping of the people they enumerate, first by County, and then by "hundred". Please note gaps in time may mean that the specific records for a "hundred" were lost and may not have appeared on the film, as opposed to the person being absent from the county. Sometimes the same "hundred" appeared more than once in a calendar year. I have listed repeat hundreds below as a 2nd or 3rd enumeration. The definition of "hundred" should be referred to in making assumptions about the location of a given person. People may not have moved because the count of what the hundred referenced, ie. livestock or other measure, may have changed the groups of persons that could show up in a given location depending on how closely the person placing the levy or tax followed the initial definition of hundred forward in time. In the case of Delaware, I did not see a lot of difference, if any, in groups of people showing up in differently names "hundreds" so it is possible, with the exception of forming new "hundreds", that people stayed in the same named group for the most part and may have also stayed in the same geographic area in the period I reviewed (pre-1800 for the most part). A definition of "hundred" is welcomed as a list posting. See Delaware Counties and Hundreds on the Delaware Genealogical Society website for more on Delaware Hundreds.

In this record the primary COMBES/COOMBS given names are William, Thomas, Adam, John, Joseph(?), Benjamin, Samuel; for McCOMBES Eleazer and John. The dates of evidence in Delaware cover from 1777 - 1800 and vary by county searched. Again, I would reread these films if this could be a direct lineage a person is tracing in case I missed anything. It takes me anywhere from 3-15 hours to read one of these microfilm. ND = No Date.


Sussex County
(earliest date 1767 - 1818)

Location: Southernmost Delaware County today bordering Maryland Counties of Caroline, Dorchester, Wicomico and Worcester.

Film #'s 0006674, 0006675*, 0006676

1790 May 31* Kent County Delinquents
John COOMBS Collector

DKM Note: This document appears as part of item #52 and appears to have been organized into the wrong county group by mistake.

Conclusion: No other COMBES mentioned in the three films mentioned above, meaning barring my human error in reading that there were NO COMBES in Sussex County, Delaware in tax lists available from 1767-1818.


New Castle County, DE
(earliest date 1738 - 1815)

Location: Northernmost Delaware County today bordering Salem County, NJ; Delaware and Chester Counties, PA; and, Cecil and Kent Counties, MD.

DKM Note: Each entry is delineated separately so that people using the data do not assume that a person by a same name is necessarily the same person.

Film #'s 0006531, 0006532, 0006533;

1777

St. George's Hundred

Thomas COOMBS

1779

Appoquiinnimink Hundred
(referred to as Appo. later in this list)

William COOMBS

St. George's Hundred

Thos COOMBS

Appo. Hundred

William Combs

St. George's Hundred

Thos COOMBS

1780

Appo. Hundred

William Combs

1780/1?

St. George's Hundred

Thomas COOMBS

1782

New Castle Hundred

Thomas Combs

St. George's Hundred

Adam COOMBS

1783

New Castle Hundred

William Combs

St. George's Hundred

Adam COOMBS
Thomas COOMBS

1784

St. George's Hundred

Adam COOMBS
Thomas COOMBS

Appo. Hundred

William Combs

1785

Appo. Hundred

William Combs

St. George's Hundred

Thomas COOMBS

1786

St. George's Hundred

Adam COOMBS
Thomas COOMBS

Appo. Hundred

John COMES

1787

New Castle Hundred

Adam COOMBS

1788

St. George's Hundred

Adam COOMB

1789

Pencard Hundred

Joseph COONS

1790

Appo. Hundred

William COOMBS

1790

St. George's Hundred

Adam COOMBS

Conclusion: Although COMBES could be in New Castle County, Delaware earlier than 1777, COMBES FIRST APPEAR IN NEW CASTLE COUNTY, DELAWARE TAX LISTS IN 1777 and ARE LAST SEEN THERE IN 1790 although the records go to 1815.


Kent County, DE
(earliest date 1726 - 1803)

Location: Central County of Delaware bordered today by Queen Annes and Cecil County, Maryland.

Film # 0006494

Item 1

ND

Unnamed Hundred

(List 3)

Transr John COMBES from Nevr? to Dover Hundr.

Item 10

ND

Unnamed Hundred

(List 3)

Benjamin COOMBS

Item 11

1766?

Mispillion Hundred

(List 4)

Benjamin COOMBS Esqr

Item 17

ND

Murderkill Hundred

(List 2)

John COOMBES 500 acres

DKM: There is a symbol or other lettering after the "Coombes" that could represent jr/sr/esqr???

Item 57

1765

Jones Hundred

Benjamin Combs

Item 58

1765

"Jones's or Dover Hundred"

Benjamin Combs

Item 59

1766

Jones Hundred

Benjamin Combs

Item 62

1767

Murtherkill Hundred

(List 1 & 2)

Benjamin Combs

Item 63

1768

Murderkill Hundred

Benjamin Combs

Item 72

1773

Unnamed Hundred

Benjamin COOMBS

Film # 0006495

Item 81

1778

Murderkill Hundred

Benja Combs Esqr

Item 83

1779

Murderkill Hundred

Benjn Combs

Murderkill Hundred

Benjn Combs (a 2nd enumeration for same place)

Murderkill Hundred

Benjamn COOMBS (" " )

Item 85

1780

Murderkill Hundred

Benjamin COOMBS

Item 87

1781

Murderkill Hundred

Benja COOMBS Er (probably Esquire)

Murderkill Hundred

Benja COOMBS Esq (a 2nd enumeration)

Item 89

1782

Murderkill Hundred

Benjn COOMBS Esq

Item 91

1783

Little Creek Hundred

Eliazor McCOOMB

Murderkill Hundred

Benjn COOMBE Esqr

Little Creek Hundred

Eliazear McCOOMBS (a 2nd enumeration)

Murderkill Hundred

Benja COOMBS Esqr (a 2nd enumeration)

Item 93

1784

Little Creek Hundred

Eleazer McCombs

Murderkill Hundred

Benja COMBE Erex? [could be Esqr]

Item 95

1785

Murderkill Hundred

Benja COMBE

Little Creek Hundred

John McCombs

Murderkill Hundred

Benjamin COOMBE (a 2nd enumeration)

Item 97

1786

Murtherkill Hundred

Benja COOMB Esq

Little (no Creek) Hundred

John McCOOMBE

Item 99

Little Creek Hundred

John M˙COMB

[DKM: This seems to be McCOMB

1787

Murderkill Hundred

Benja COOMBE Esq

Film # 0006496

Item 101

1788

Little Creek Hundred

Eleazer McCOMB Ex

Little Creek Hundred

Eleazer McCOMB Esq (a 2nd enumeration)

Dover Hundred

John COMBES

Murderkill Hundred

Benja COOMBES Esqr
John COOMBS

Item 102

1790

Unnamed Hundred

John Combs

Murtherkill Hundred

Benja COOMB Esqr

DKM Note: Murderkill and Murtherkill Hundred may be one and the same since Delaware is known for being a Dutch settlement and the enunciated form of the word could vary. Editors note: Mutherkill was possibly Motherkill, which was consolidated with Murderkill and divided into North and South Murderkill in 1855.

Item 104

1790

Dover Hundred

______ COMB [sheet torn]

Murtherkill Hundred

Benja COOMB Esqr

John COOMB

DKM Note: (John COOMB follows Benja COOMB on the next line in the enumeration.)

Item 105

1789

DKM Note: The following quoted from the list and the implications for further research on this COMBES family.) At the end of the first two pages of delinquent tax payers it says:
"We the subscribers do hereby certify that John Coombs Collector of State Tax for the year 1789
(signed) Exd Eli COMB

DKM Note: On another list it is signed "Ecd Elo C" It is possible that the term is -- executed and the person could be an Eli COMB or an Eleazer McCOMB who shows up in the tax list in Kent County.)

Item 106

1791

Dover Hundred

Joshua McCOOMB

Murtherkill Hundred

Benja COOMBE Jur (junior)
Benja COOMBE
John COOMBE

Item 110

1793

Murderkill Hundred

Benjamin COOMB Jr. (early in list)
Benjamin COOMB (later in list)
John COOMB
Samuel COOMB

Item 112

1794

Murderkill Hundred

Benjamin COOMBS Jr. (early in list)
Benja COOMBS (later in list next to each other in order)
John COOMBS
Saml COOMBS

Item 118

1797

Little Creek Hundred

Eleazer McCOOMBS (landowner)

Item 120

1797

Murderkill Hundred

Benjamin COOMBS (land acreage 290/250/100)
Samuel COOMBE (no land)
Benjamin COOMBE Jr. (1 lott of ground)
John COOMBS heirs (land acreage 300/200 at Kerrytown)

Item 130

1798

Murderkill Hundred

Samuel COOMBE (no acres)
Benjamin COOMBS 755 acres

(Samuel and Benjamin are next to each other in the enumeration)

Lane COMBE Negros (no acres)
Roger COMBES (probably a negro since he and Lane appear at the end of the tax list in what appears to be a negro group that was enumerated)

Murderkill Hundred

(a 2nd list)

Benjamin COOMBS senior acreage of 290/250/100/106/9
Samuel COOMBE ((no acres)

Murderkill Hundred

(a 3rd list)

Benjamin COOMBE 705 acres
Samuel COOMBE (no acres)
Lane COMBE (Negroes)
Roger COMBES (same group of negroes)

Item 131

1799

Murderkill Hundred

Samuel COOMBES (some notation after his name but can't decipher)

(a 2nd list)

Item 132

1800

Murderkill Hundred

Benjamin COOMBES Deceased

Item 136

1800 Docket Duplicates of several hundreds corrected for the year.

Murderkill Hundred

John COOMBES (mins) 1430 acres [DKM: mins probably means minors]
Benjamin COOMBE 705 acres
Samuel COOMBE 363 acres
Lane COMBE (negro) 100 acres
Roger COOMBES (negro) 100 acres

DKM Note: The Benjamin COOMBE with 705 acres could be the same person being carried on the tax list until the probate is finalized or the Benjamin Jr. that appeared earlier with the jr. dropped assuming the esqr. was the one who died. I have seen both methods of enumeration.

Conclusion: COMBES APPEAR IN KENT COUNTY DELAWARE AS EARLY AS 1765 and AS LATE AS 1800. Note the film ends there and should be checked further. MC COMBES APPEAR IN KENT COUNTY DELAWARE AS EARLY AS 1783 and LAST APPEAR IN 1797. This should also be pursued further forward in time in case the hundreds were incomplete or missing. It appears that there are some probate records that could be sought for both a John and Benjamin COOMBES. Also, note the McCOMBES are probably not complete, but will at least help some researchers and direct them to an area and time frame. I was looking at "C" surnames so there could be information under "M" I completely missed.

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