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Introduction

Talbot County, Maryland was organized in 1662 from Kent County, Maryland. In 1671, Kent gained substantially from Talbot, and in 1696, Kent and Talbot exchanged lands (See 17th Century Combs &c. of Maryland)

No pre-1662 Combs have been found in Kent, but the earliest Combs to Talbot was probably Mary COMBS, servant of Jacob BREMINGTON, who may have been in what would become Talbot by as early as 1659. Enoch and Barbara COMBES, Sr., and son, Enoch COMBES, Jr., were apparently in Talbot by late 1663, possibly from Lancaster County, Virginia, where an Enoch is found of record in 1660; and Walter COMBS, a carpenter, and Fennecky his wife, who came from New York by 1664-6. Excepting perhaps Enoch, none of these have been found in later records (see 1600s Talbot). It is William and John COMBS, who began appearing in Talbot records in 1676, who have been of the most interest to researchers in this county.

Although not the earliest Combs of record in Talbot County, the only early COMBS of this county whose descendants are known are John and William who first appear in in the records in 1676-77, and who married about that time, respectively, Mary and Elizabeth ROE, daughters of Edward and Mary ROE, the latter the widow of a DUNCOMBE (DUNCAN) by whom she had Thomas. The ROE family came to Talbot from Lancaster County, Virginia abt 1665-66. Whether the Combs came with them or not is not known. A John COMBS was transported to Maryland in 1655, and a William in 1669, but no more is known of either, including by whom they were transported (See Earliest Combs to Maryland).

Edward and Mary ROE were apparently well acquainted in Lancaster with the Gorsuch, Howell and Dickinson families who also came to Talbot from Lancaster, and quite possibly with Richard BALL of Lancaster and Baltimore County, Maryland, who transported a George COMBS to Maryland, and whose brother, William, had married a step-niece of Archdale COMBS of Old Rappahannock County, Virginia (neighboring county of Lancaster).

No record of either William or John is found prior to their marriages, nor any immigration records. Their ages are unknown, and the lack of records could either be meaningless or indicate that they were born in Maryland, perhaps even sons of either Phillip or Enoch COMBES.

Edward ROE died in 1676, occasioning a series of land disputes between the Combs-Roe Families and the daughters of Henry and Frances MORGAN of Kent Island and Tredhaven Creek in Talbot. Frances MORGAN, born 1 Oct 1656, and Barbara MORGAN, born 5 Nov 1660, both in Kent County, Maryland (see below), had married, respectively, Col. Peter SAYER of Talbot and John ROUSBY, Esq. of Calvert. The suits show not only where some of Edward ROE'S land was located, but also that William and John may have either been from, or removed to, St. Mary's County, Maryland. William reappears in Talbot County very quickly, but John and Mary have not been located… unless he is the John of St. Mary's County who "disclaims" land possessed by Enoch in Poplar Hill hundred some time before 1707.

Despite the land disputes, and despite the fact that William was Protestant and Peter a Catholic, William COMBS and Peter SAYER appeared to have a good relationship during the decade after the land dispute… until 1689 when the Protestant William of Orange too the English throne. A revolution occurred in Maryland, and a letter from Peter SAYER to Lord BALTIMORE actually quotes Elizabeth ROE Combs, quotes that indicate they were still close at the time, but probably not for much longer as William COMBS, already a Major, sided with the more fanatical Protestants, even though Barbara MORGAN Rousby's second husband, Richard SMITH, Jr. had been imprisoned by them. (See Combs &c. and the Maryland Revolution of 1689).

William died sometime between 1690 and 1692, but no record of his death has been located, not even estate inventories or accounts. His widow, Elizabeth, had remarried by 1692, to Nicholas LOWE, and her will names a son, Edward, and a William COMBS who may have been either her son or a grandson.

Combs Associated Families of Talbot

The Gorsuch/Lovelace (a.k.a. ROWE) families came to from Hertfordshire, England, then to Charles and Talbot Counties, Maryland and who also had New York connections through their maternal uncle, Francis LOVELACE? (A Combs &c. Research Report will be published shortly on these families). "other" (?) Combs are part of the "Combs-Lowe-Rowe" Families, and may include Enoch, as well as William and John:

Edward ROWE came to Talbot Co MD from Lancaster Co VA, possibly with the LOVELACE-GORSUCH Families as well as (possibly) the POWELLS and BALLS (See Also Underwood Families). Edward ROE had married, probably in Lancaster Co, VA, Mary UNKNOWN, widow of Unknown DUNCOMBE (a.k.a. DUNCAN) and mother of Thomas DUNCOMBE by her earlier marriage. By Mary, Edward ROE had two daughters, Elizabeth ROE who m (1) William COMBS and (2) Col. Nicholas LOWE; and Mary ROE who m John COMBS. Neither the ancestry of John & William COMBS, nor their relationship to each other (presumed) is known.

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