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Giles Co, Tennessee was established in 1809 from Maury County, Tennessee. In 1920, Giles gave up territory to Lawrence Co on its west. Giles County, Tennessee was due north of the Alabama state line (See Also Madison Co, Alabama and historical and biographical below)


1820 Giles County, TN Census Index

No Combs


1830 Giles County, Tennessee Census

p. 35

L02 UNDERWOOD, Thos.
0000001-012

L16 LOYD, Wm.
10001-02111

L17 James W. Combs(?):
100001-22001

L18 BYRD, W. H.
20012-00001

(1830 West TN Census, Byron Sistler and Associates, Nashville, TN, 1971, 1996 reprint)

Notes: See Also James W. Combs Letters (1811-1819); and a younger James W. Combs of Allen Co, Kentucky. Could the above be somehow kin to James of the letters? James W. Combs, born ca 1790-1800, married, Mary BUFORD, daughter of Charles BUFORD. (See below)


1840 Giles County, TN Census Index

Page 63

Combs, J. W.


1850 Giles County, TN Census Index

p. 664

Pulaski

-/- Mary Combs 45 TN
Julia 18 TN
Mary 15
James 13
Allis 11
Harrington 19
BRYANT, Joseph L. 31
Ann 22

("1850 Census - Tennessee," transcribed and indexed by Byron & Barbara Sistler, Evanston, IL, 1974, Byron Sistler & Associates, Inc., Nashville, TN, 1991 reprint)

Notes: The above may be Mary BUFORD, d/o Charles BUFORD, and widow(?) of Atty. James W. Combs based on the following record. Was Harrington Combs an older son of Mary and/or James W.? Was Ann BRYANT a married daughter? Also note that Census Index indicates this record was Pulaski, p. 32, and that a Joseph B. STACEY is indexed under Pulaski, p. 30.


1852 Pulaski, Giles Co, TN. Married: Daniel Lee FERGUSON (s/o Edmond and Mary SHERON Ferguson) and Mary T. Combs, d/o James & (Mary?) BUFORD Combs).

"Mississippi Co, Arkansas biography of Daniel Lee FERGUSON was born near Pulaski, Giles County, Tenn., September 30, 1832. His family was an old North Carolina family of Scotch origin. His father, Edmond FERGUSON, moved from Wilkes County, N. C., to Giles County. Tenn., in 1824, where he soon afterward married Mary SHERON, who was also of a North Carolina family, and of English descent. They both died in 1840, leaving a family of seven children. Daniel Lee was the fourth child, and only eight years of age when his parents died, and from that early age he has fought his way unaided through the world. He is a fine representative of the self-made men of our times. In September, 1852, he married Mary T. Combs. of Pulaski [Giles Co], Tenn. She was the daughter of James Combs, attorney at law, and granddaughter of Capt. Charles BUFORD, a noted man of his day and time. A month after their marriage the young couple moved to Tunica County, Miss., which at that time was an almost unbroken wilderness. Mr. FERGUSON there began his career as a cotton planter, which business he has successfully followed ever since. In 1869, on account of his wife's failing health, he moved to Memphis [Shelby Co], Tenn., where he went into business as a cotton factor and commission merchant, in the firm of FERGUSON & HAMPSON. At the same time he kept up his business as a cotton planter. In December, 1875, his wife died of consumption. Two children were born of this marriage, both-of whom died in their early infancy. In January, 1877, he married again, his second wife being Mary Alcy (CARLETON), widow of Benjamin R. NORRIS. Her ancestry on the CARLETON side belonged to an old Virginia family of English descent. Her father was a prominent physician of North Mississippi before the war. On her mother's side she is connected with the ORRS, GRAYS AND ALEXANDERS, fine old Scotch-Irish families of Mecklenburg County, N. C., and Mississippi. She had one child by her first marriage, Pearl Eglantine NORRIS, who died soon after her father, in 1874. One child has blessed this second marriage, a daughter, Alcyone Carleton FERGUSON, who is now a bright little girl, eleven years of age. In 1877 Mr. FERGUSON became interested in the Nodena plantation, in Mississippi County, Ark., which was then in litigation, and when it was sold by the supreme court of the State, in 1879, he bought it for himself and his partner, Mr. HAMPSON. Immediately thereafter he was plunged into a long and expensive lawsuit, which lasted nearly ten years, and seriously crippled him financially. But in the end he gained the lawsuit, after carrying it through all the courts of both Tennessee and Arkansas. His family have made Nodena their home since 1879. He found he could not give his business in Memphis the attention it required, and in 1884 closed up his affairs there entirely, and concentrated all his energies at Nodens. He is one of the largest cotton planters on the Mississippi River above Memphis. A view of his broad fields, white with the open cotton, in the autumn, is a sight worthy of admiration. For thirty-seven years the steamers that float on the bosom of the mighty Mississippi have carried his cotton bales to the markets of the world. His plantation, with the rich alluvial lands surrounding it, is interesting from another point of view than its cotton fields. That pre-historic and once mighty race, "The Mound Builders," had an abiding place here, in the centuries long gone by, as is evidenced by the mounds they have left behind them. Mighty oaks crown the summits of these mounds, and speak in silent whispers of the watch they have for centuries kept over them. Races come and go, and these mounds still stand, the monuments of a forgotten people. Mrs. FERGUSON is an enthusiastic mound explorer, and has quite a collection of the vessels and implements of those pre-historic people. She hopes to he able, through her explorations, to throw some light upon the habits and customs of that early race. It is with regret that we leave Mr. FERGUSON and his interesting plantation, with the mounds and their buried histories, the cotton fields that will help to clothe the people of the world, and the majestic river as it sweeps onward in its resistless course to the sea. Mr. FERGUSON seems to belong to such surroundings. A man of magnificent stature and noble bearing, in his broad bosom there beats a heart that is large enough to sympathize with the sufferings of all humanity. Not one of the human family ever turned from his door hungry, or cold from nakedness. He is always ready to lend a listening ear to the woes of the afflicted and needy, and his purse is always open to the wants of the poor. It can truly be said of him, "He is one of Nature's noblemen." (Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Northeast Arkansas, Goodspeed Publishers, Chicago, 1889, Mississippi Co, AR, pages 493-4)


Extracted from A Brief Sketch of the Settlement and Early History of Giles County Tennessee by James McCallum 1876, published by The Pulaski Citizen 1928 (Contributed to the Giles County, TNGenWeb Project by Janice Castleman).

"… The third [Giles Co, TN] Circuit Court was held in June, 1810. Thomas STEWART was Judge, and James BERRY was appointed Clerk. The first courts were attended by a large number of attorneys from other counties, among them were: Thomas H. BENTON, Felix GRUNDY, O. B. HAYS, Alfred BALCH, Marmaduke WILLIAMS, Peter R. BOOKER, John KELLY, John WHITE, Robert MACK, Wm. WHITE, Easthouse LEWIS, _________HASKELL, COULTER, and others; besides Alfred M. HARRIS, George CUNNINGHAM, and Lunsford M. BRAMLETTE, resident attorneys. A few years later Aaron V. BROWN, Wm. H. FIELD and Tryon M. YANCEY were numbered with the resident lawyers. At a later date, John H. RIVERS, Wm. C. FLOURNOY, Collin S. TARPLEY, E. J. SHIELDS, James W. COOMBS

"On the 23rd of November, 1809, the Legislature chartered an Academy for Giles County, called Pulaski Academy, and appointed John SAPPINGTON, Nelson PATTERSON, Tyree RODES, Samuel JONES, Somerset MOORE, Charles BUFORD, and Charles NEELY, Trustees…

"… The treaties of 1805 and 1806 extinguished the Indian title to a considerable portion of what is now Madison County, Alabama. Soon after the treaty, Zacharia COX and his associates, the "Tennessee Zazoo Company", claimed this scope of country as against the US Government. …

"…These settlers, with a few others in the neighborhood raised corn in 1807. James FORD with a number of others, including James WILLIAMS, Parish SIMMS, Thos. DODD, Simon FOY, and Thos. KYLE, with their families started from Hawkins County in East Tennessee in the Spring of 1807 with four boats, when the boats had ascended Elk about opposite SIMMS' settlement three of the boats with the SIMMSES, KYLE and others went out to view the country, and concluded to stop there and settled what was long known as SIMMS' settlement, in Limestone Co., AL.

"… about the same time the McKINNEYS came and settled in the neighborhood. The old man HUNNICUT and sons came soon after FORD and settled on the south side of the river below the mouth of Richland… the BUFORDS and others traveled his trail as early as the Fall of 1807…

"… BUMPASS, the BUCHANANS, EZELLs, and others, who came about the time they did, raised corn in 1808. Lewis BROWN, Lester MORRIS, Buckner HARWELL and his sons, William CRITTENDN (sic) and his sons, Alexander TARPLEY, Robert McNAIRY, William WELLS Sr., and his sons, Mark MITCHELL, Jesse WESTMORELAND, Thos. WESTMORELAND, W. B. PEPPER, Colonel L. CLEAVELAND, Reverend William CALLOWAY and William ABERNATHY, (father of Chas. C. ABERNATHY), came in the latter part of 1808, and early in 1809…

"… Mark MITCHELL settled the place now owned by Colston ABERNATHY; Jesse WESTMORELAND settled the place now owned by John NEWBILL; William WELLS the place since known as the WELLS or MOSELEY place; CLEAVELAND and CALLOWAY settled on the old Stage Road, half a mile or three quarters south of where the Rev. C. P. REED lived. CLEAVELAND at the place BIRDSONG lived on, and CALLOWAY about 300 yards further on south. CALLOWAY was a Baptist preacher, and one of the first preachers in the County…

"… Old William RIGGS, Joseph MOORE, and Daniel COX, came about the same time. Dan COX settled on Richland Creek, where Thomas WESTMORELAND a year afterwards settled, long known as the JONES place. James KIMBROUGH, the father of Henry T. KIMBROUGH, Elijah ANTHONY and Joseph ANTHONY, the father of James D., and Joseph C. ANTHONY all came about the same time and settled in the neighborhood. Joseph ANTHONY, where James D., now lives…

"… John BUTLER and John BARNETT came soon after WESTMORELANDS; the precise date not known. BUTLER settled on what was long known as the BUTLER place, north of Aspen Hill. BARNETT settled about a mile southwest of Aspen Hill. A few years later the Rev. Aaron BROWN and his sons, Thomas and William settled in the neighborhood. The Rev. Aaron BROWN on the place afterwards owned by his son, Governor Aaron V. BROWN, and called the Aspen Hill place. Thos. BROWN half a mile southeast of Aspen Hill, at what has since been known as the PETTY place. Wm. BROWN at what has since been called the Steven BILES place…

"…Charles BUFORD, Jas. BUFORD and Somerset MOORE came to the neighborhood of Pulaski in the Fall of 1807. The father of the BUFORD'S, James BUFORD, Sr., was one of the first settlers of Williamson County, lived in Williamson County near Thompson's Station and owned a tract of two thousand acres of land adjoining the southwest corner of Pulaski. His sons and MOORE who was a son-in-law, made some improvements on the land in 1807. In the Fall sowed turnips and went back and moved their families out early in 1808. Charles BUFORD settled the place known as the Charles BUFORD place. James BUFORD settled the place now owned by the heirs of Nicholas BUFORD; Somerset MOORE the place on Moore's Creek, now owned by Mrs. FOGG. The creek was named for him, though BUFORD'S and MOORE came the BUMPASS trail… Wm. MAYFIELD and sons were very early settlers…

"… Wm. B. DAVIS, Wm. BALL, Jas. BERRY, German and Fountain LESTER, Dan MARTIN, Richard SCOTT, Jas. DREW, Jas. H. WILLIAMS, Wm. HAMBY, Thos. SMITH, Jno. McCRACKEN, Jno. O. TALBOT, Henry HOGAN, Dr. Shadrack NYE, Joseph H. TROTTER, Joseph H. HODGE, Dr. Gilbert D. TAYLOR, David WOODS, Lewis JAMES and William CONER, Samuel G. ANDERSON, Nathaniel MOODY, Alfred M. HARRIS, Lunsford M. BRAMLETTE, of these DAVIS, BALL, SCOTT, and TALBOT were among the first.

"… Richard SCOTT had a small stock of goods in a cabin near KIRK'S which he soon after sold out to Jno. Q. TALBOT. William BALL kept a grocery in a cabin near KIRK'S." These were then the only houses and improvements in what is now the town of Pulaski that he remembered. A number of persons were then living in the immediate neighborhood and vicinity of whom he remembers, PATTERSON, WILKERSON, BLACK, the BUFORDS, MOORE, and others… Among the first merchants were Richard SCOTT, David MARTIN, Jno. Q. TALBOT, Jas. DOREN, Jno. McCRACKEN and Henry HAGAN…."

Notes: See Peter BOOKER and Combs of Sullivan Co, TN. See also Carlton Combs Letter as well as full text of this excerpt in regard to the Duck River area, and the Giles TN - Madison Co, Alabama settlement. Note also the presence of the COX and TALBOT Families and see Jefferson County, Tennessee re Cox-Combs-Talbot (Carlton's cousins). See Hawkins County, Tennessee re Mark MITCHELL and Parish SIMMS, associates of the Combs-Johnsons of that county. See 1821 Hardin Co, TN record of James W. Combs, admitted to bar of that county.

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