Combs &c. Families
of San Diego Co, CA

1875 San Diego Union Newspaper.

Thomas B. Combs, age 30, born in Kentucky, died January 22, 1875 in San Diego, California. San Diego Union Newspaper lists age as 30.

1900 California Soundex

(Provided to Combs Researcher Valarie Watkins from information provided by Opal Combs to her mother Marie Watkins.  

Combs, John A. age 70 born: Feb 1830 in Kentucky
Resides in San Diego.
Wife - Martha age ? born: Aug 1853 in Mexico
Citizen of Mexico State/Not Reported
John T. born June 1880 in California
William H. Oct 1883 in California
Lulu O. April 1886 in California
George F. Jan 1887 in California
Aletha A. Mar 1891 in California
Walter W. Sept 1894 in California
MC CORMACK, Thomas 1881 in Mass

VW Notes: William H. is listed as William A.   Martha is listed as being born in Old Town of San Diego; California did not become a state until 1850.)

Combs, William Henry age 54 born: March 1846 in Kentucky
Resides in San Diego, California
Wife: Electa ORMSBY age 32 born: April 1868 in Arkansas
Children: Henry B. age 5 born: February 1895 California
Robert O. age 2 born: January 1898 California

The Oceanside Blade - December 7, 1907:  (Combs Researcher Valarie Watkins)

"John A. Combs, a pioneer resident of the county and for many years living in Pala, died at that place Thursday, aged 78 years. The cause of death was an apoplectic stroke.  Mr. Combs was a constable of San Luis Rey Township for many years, in early days he made a record as a "criminal catcher" in those rough times, landing many a murderer, horse thief and other bad men behind the bars.    At one time he followed a man who had committed a murder, for nearly two hundred miles, traveling with him some time before getting a chance to get the drop on the fellow, who was well armed.   Finally, the murderer, who was on foot, got footsore, and stopped to wash his feet at a mountain stream, laid his guns down.   When the officer covered him with his gun and handcuffing him, brought him back to suffer the penalty for his crime."

Escondido Times: (Escondido, California, San Diego County, California) 13 December 1907

"John A. Combs died in Pala a few days ago at age 78 years. He was a pioneer in San Diego County, acting as Constable of San Luis Rey township for many years in the early days.   A write up and pictures of the old store and post office in Descanso taken from the files of the Union title and Trust Co. of San Diego. The write up said, "a typical General Store of the Cracker Barrel era" was John Combs place in Descanso, shown above in this 1895 photo from the historical files of the Union Title and Trust Company.  San Diegan's became acquainted with the spot as a stopover on the old stage line that ran from San Diego through Alpine and Descanso and Cuyamaca. Here, they would enjoy refreshments sold to them by John's "full-blooded Indian wife," or by one of the many Combs ' children.  Upstairs from the store, in a space under the eaves, was a row of cots, that Combs rented out for 25-cents a night. Here undoubtedly many dreams of fortunes in gold were dreamed by wandering prospectors. Now barely an hours drive from San Diego, Descanso was in those days a tedious day and a half journey by team."

VW Notes: This information was provided by Marie Watkins through Opal Combs, Family Historian. John's wife was a native Californian of Spanish ancestry. Aunt Lu thought I did the write up and said, "Indian wife! She wasn't Indian." Aunt Lu was mad as a hornet!!!! Mattea MURILLO, daughter of Eugene and Laura (WARNER) MURILLO, was not Indian. John Combs is buried on the Higgins farm. No death certificate.

Obituary. Santa Ana Daily Register Saturday Evening Edition: July 12, 1924 Page 2 Col. 2.

"Plan Funeral of Capistrano Woman. Plans have been completed today to hold services at the church in the mission of San Juan Capistrano, Monday 8:00 a.m. for Mrs. Martha Matea Combs, 71 years old, who died late yesterday at the home in that city of her son, Walter Combs. Following the services the body will be brought here for internment in Fairhaven Cemetery. Mrs. Combs was born August 22, 1853, at Old Town, near San Diego, her father being Eugene MURILLO, and her mother Laura WARNER. Her husband, John A. Combs, Sr. preceded her in death by eighteen years. Mrs. Combs had been a resident of San Juan Capistrano, for seventeen years. She lived for many years in Descanso, San Diego County; before moving to this mission town. She was the mother of ten children, all of whom are living, three of them being by a former marriage. They are: Sylvano GILLETTE of Spokane, Washington; Mrs. Emmeline DONALDSON and Mrs. Mari HASTINGS of San Francisco, CA; Leslie Combs of Portland, Oregon; John T. Combs of Santa Ana; Willie Combs of Shelton, Nebraska; George Combs of San Diego; Walter Combs of San Juan Capistrano, and Mrs. Lulu Combs-Stephens and Mrs. Aleatha Combs-Tucker of Redlands. A sister, Mrs. C.P. BROWN of San Diego , also survives."

Family Group Sheets: (Submitted by Combs Researcher Valarie Watkins)

1. John Andrew Combs was born in 1830 in Kentucky died in 1907 in San Diego, CA; m 1) Merced BUSTAMENTE; 2) 15 Dec 1877, Mattea Martha MURILLO (b: August 22, 1853). Children:

John T. Combs born June 1880 in California

William H. Combs (sometimes listed with an A) born October 1883 in California

Lulu Onesta Combs born April 1886 in California

George F. Combs born January 1887 in California

Aletha A. Combs born March 1891 in California

Walter W. Combs born September 1894 in California

2. Combs, William Henry, Born: abt. 1841 in Hardin County (?) Kentucky, Died: 10 November 1901 in Patton State Hopsital, Patton [San Bernardino Co], California, married: 1) Lizzy (Libby) ORMSBY on 7 Dec 1873 (from San Diego Union Newspaper), 2) Electa ORMSBY on 26 April 1888 in Guatay, San Diego, California. Electra ORMSBY was born on April 10, 1868 in Fort Smith, Arkansas. She died on June 16, 1947 in Norwalk, California. Buried: Inglewood Memorial Park, in Los Angeles. Electra was married twice 1) William Henry Combs 2) Sila W. HONACKER. Electa's parents were Ezra M. ORMSBY & Augusta BRADFORD.


Bradford Henry Combs, born: 8 January 1896 in San Diego, California, died: 6 August 1950 in Covina, California, married: Myrtle Dilmer SWEENEY

Robert Ormsby Combs, born: 4 March 1898 in San Diego, California, died: 13 February 1955 in Los Angeles, California, married: 1) ?, 2) Lorena L. MOORE (Mrs.)

VW Notes: John Andrew Combs' father may have been a Benjamin Combs, ( either Sr. or Jr.) born in 1797 from Barren Creek, Kentucky.

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