Washington County Biography of:
"I. G. COMBS was born in Prairie Township, Washington Co., Ark., June 3, 1855, and was reared to manhood on his father's farm. After obtaining a good common-school education he took a three years' course in the A. I. U., and after completing his studies in that institution, turned his attention to pedagoguing, continuing that occupation for about four years, teaching in all about eight terms of school. During the summer months his attention was given to agricultural pursuits, and in his farming and other enterprises he has been quite successful, having acquired a comfortable competency. He has always taken an active interest in politics. and is the present sherriff of Washington County.
He was married to Miss Martha COWEN, a daughter of Anthony and Georgiana (HURT) Cowen, who were natives of Middle Tennessee. She is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church South.
The father of the subject of this sketch, Mr. Nathan COMBS, was born in Breathitt County, Ky., September 19, l830, and is a son of Matthew and Frankie (BROWN) Combs, both of whom were born and married in Buncombe County, N. C. They removed to Kentucky shortly after their marriage, where they spent the remainder of their days, dying in 1866 and 1868. respectively. They became the parents of nine children, all but three of whom are dead.
Their son Nathan was reared on a farm in the "Blue Grass" State, and at the age of twenty-three years [ca 1853] came to Washington County, Ark., where he married, and in 186l settled on his farm of 757 acres, three miles southeast of Fayetteville. His farm consists mostly of bottom land, with 450 acres under cultivation, and he has a fine orchid of 1,500 fruit trees. He has a substantial and commodious two-story brick residence, and for many years has devoted his time exclusively to farming, and has achieved a decided success in that calling. He began life for himself with only $13, and is now ranked among the wealthy and prosperous farmers of the county.
June 7, 1854, he was married to Elizabeth CLINE, a native of Tennessee, by whom he became the father of one son, Isaac G. He and wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, and in politics he has always been a Democrat, and has taken a deep interest in the political affairs of the country. His wife's parents were Virginians. and her father, George CLINE, was a captain in the War of 1812, and served two terms in the Legislature of Arkansas, having moved to the State about 1838." (Goodspeeds' History of Northwest, Arkansas…)
From the Southwestern Reporter [Law Review], Ark., p. 18, No. 254,
COMBS et al. v. COMBS et al, Supreme Court of AR, March 7, 1927)
Summary of Chancery Suit:
Charge: On 25 Apr 1899, Nathan COMBS, late resident of Washington county, died testate leaving surviving his widow, Elizabeth COMBS, and his son Isaac COMBS; said will was admitted to probate in Washington County, by the terms of which the testator made certain bequests, and then disposed of the remainder in the following language:
"And I give and bequeath the residue of my estate, after my funeral expenses and just debts I have all been paid, to my beloved wife, Elizabeth Combs, and to my son, Isaac Combs, for and during their natural lives, with the remainder in fee to Isaac G. Combs if he should survive my said wife, and in the event that my said son, Isaac G. Combs, should fail to have a child or children born to him. and should die seized and possessed of any of said property, I desire and will that the same be divided equally between the sons of my three brothers, Alfred, Sewell and Isaac Combs."
It is further alleged that said Isaac G. COMBS, son of the testator, survived his mother and died testate without issue on the 26th of March, 1825, and that his will was admitted to probate in said county; that at the time of his death, the said Isaac G. COMBS was seized and possessed of a large amount of real property which had come to him through the estate of his father; that at the August, 1925, term of the Washington chancery court, in an action between Martha COMBS et al against the unknown heirs of Henderson COMBS et al., the court entered a decree finding that under the will of Isaac G. COMBS, his wife, Martha COMBS, was the sole beneficiary and legatee, and, as such was the owner in fee of all the real and personal property of which the said Isaac G Combs died seized and possessed. The court then finds that he died without having born to him any child or children, and that he died seized and possessed of a large amount of real property which come to him under the will of his father, Nathan COMBS, which is set out and described at length.
The court further found in its decree, after quoting the paragraph of the will above set out, that Elizabeth COMBS, the wife of Nathan Combs, died prior to the death of Isaac G. COMBS, and that Alfred COMBS, brother of Nathan COMBS, mentioned in his said will as above had six sons. all of whom died prior to the death of Isaac G. COMBS; that Isaac COMBS, brother of NATHAN, mentioned in his will, had three sons. J. TV., A. T., and R. L. COMBS, and that said R. L. Combs died about the year 1900, and left surviving him the plaintiffs L. R. COMBS and W. O. HICKS; and that therefore the only sons of the brothers mentioned in the will of NATHAN COMBS who were living at the time of the death of ISAAC G. COMBS were the plaintiffs A. T. and J. W. Combs.
The court further found in said decree that under said paragraph of the will of the said NATHAN COMBS, above set forth, that any right, interest, or property bequeathed to the sons of said brothers was contingent and could not vest under said will until the death of the said ISAAC G. COMBS, and that, therefore, none of the children nor heirs at law of the sons of the brothers of NATHAN COMBS who died prior to the death of the said ISAAC G. COMBS acquired any interest under the will of said NATHAN COMBS, and that A. T. and J. W. COMBS acquired all the interest or right conveyed by the above provision of said will.
The court further found that the plaintiff MARTHA COMBS, his widow and sole legatee under the will of her husband. Isaac G. COMBS had "anncounced in open court by her counsel that she desires that the property herinunto before set out and described be vested and conveyed under and by virtue of the provisions of the will of the said NATHAN COMBS, deceaed, as above set forth…"
The Court found that "…. A. T. and J. W. COMBS were entitled… each the owners in fee of an undivided one half interest in said lands, and the court entered a decree based upon findings…"
The complainant alleged that C. F. and H. H. COMBS were the only sons of Sewell COMBS, referred to as a residuary legatee in the will of Nathan COMBS, and that others of the plaintiffs are the daughters and widow of Sewell COMBS; that T. A. COMBS, W. M, I. N., S. S. Jr., and JAMES H. COMBS are the only sons of ALFRED COMBS, referred to as the residuary legatee in the will of NATHAN COMBS, and in Nov 1904 they conveyed all their interest in the estate of NATHAN COMBS to SEWELL COMBS; that ALFRED COMBS and SEWELL COMBS, named in the will of NATHAN COMBS were not his brothers, but were nephews and that the will erroneously designated them as brothers of the testator, when as a matter of fact, they were nephews, and that Nathan COMBS did not have a brother named SEWELL COMBS, and that it was the intent of the testator, NATHAN COMBS, that the sons of his nephew, Alfred COMBS, should receive an undivided one-third interest in the residue of his estate remaining in the hands of his son, ISAAC COMBS, at the time of his death; that it was the intent of said testator that the sons of his nephew, Sewell COMBS, should receive a like one-third share, and that the sons of his brother, Isaac, should receive a like undivided one-third share therein.
It is further alleged that the plaintiffs, C. F. and H. H. COMBS, as sole and only sons of the nephew, SEWELL COMBS, are the owners of an undivided one-third of the real property as a residuary legatee under the will of NATHAN COMBS; that the plaintiffs C. F. H H and Annie Belle COMBS and Alice PIERATT are the owners of an undivided one-third interest therein, subject to the dower right of the plaintiff Kate COMBS, by virtue of inheritance from the nephew, Sewell COMBS, of the share purchased by him from the said T. A., W. M., I. N., S. S. Jr. and James COMBS; that these parties were not made parties to the actionof Martha COMBS and others against the unknown heirs of Henderson COMBS and others, prosecuted in the chancery court at the Aug 1925 term, and had no notice or knowledge of said action whatever…
C. D. ATKINSON, of Fayetteville, for appellants.
W. N. IVIE of Ft. Smith and H. L. PEARSON, E. B. WALL, and COMBS & JOHNSON, all of Fayetteville, for appellees.
Matthew COMBS, grandfather of I[saac] G. COMBS above, was a first cousin to Elijah COMBS, Jr., father of Madison Co, AR Early Settler Capt. Hiram COMBS
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