Peasants to Puddles
My Family History - By Nicky Rowberry

The Colcombs

Sarah Colcomb (or Colecomb or Colcombe) was my 3xgreat grandmother. Of all the trees I've researched, I think I've had the most trouble with the Colcombes. Considering it is a relatively unusual surname, it really shouldn't have been that difficult and yet I've had to revise this tree so many times. The first definite thing I know about Sarah Colcombe is that she married my 3xgreat grandfather Thomas Powell Chamberlain in 1828 in Hereford's St Nicholas church. One of the witnesses was an Eliza Colcombe, who I think was Sarah's cousin. Thomas & Sarah had 9 children before her untimely death in 1848 in Mansel Lacy. Since she died before the 1851 census, I only have her on one census - the 1841, which unfortunately only tells us that she was born in Herefordshire, not which parish. But her death certificate gives her age as 38, putting her birth around 1810.

For a long time I thought Sarah was probably the daughter of George Colcombe & Mary Francis, who had a child Sarah baptised in 1806 in Kings Pyon. But I have now realised this cannot be my Sarah, as this Sarah Colcombe was alive and well in 1851 and unmarried, living with her brother Thomas in the Leominster area. So the only other likely candidate I can find is a Sarah Colcomb baptised in 1809 in Dilwyn, the illegitimate daughter of another Sarah Colcomb. The image below shows the entry from the parish register.

This senior Sarah seems to have had at least 2 other daughters in Dilwyn, Mary Colcomb in 1810 & Elizabeth Colcomb in 1821 and a son James Colcomb born in 1802 in Kings Pyon. There are no likely marriages for Sarah Colcomb senior, so I think she remained unmarried. There is a Sarah Colcomb aged 60 (give or take, the 1841 census is notoriously inaccurate) living alone in Kings Pyon in 1841. Kings Pyon is only about 3 miles from Dilwyn. She is about the right age for Sarah senior and as far as I know there were no other Sarah Colcombs living in the area at the time. So I'm reasonably confident that this is my Sarah Colcomb senior. This Sarah died, aged 67, in 1847 in Kings Pyon and the informant on the death certificate was Elizabeth Colcombe - most likely her youngest daughter.

Initially I thought the most likely parents for this Sarah were a James Colcomb and a Sarah Parton who married in Leominster in 1767. But having done a search of the parish registers, I found a much more likely baptism in 1780 in Kings Pyon to Thomas & Sarah Colcombe (nee Green). So this is the line I currently believe to be the correct one. Thomas & Sarah had married in 1776 in Marden, with Thomas' brother Henry Colcombe as a witness. This Thomas Colcombe was a stone mason and it looks like many of the family may have followed suit. His grand-daughter Sarah Colcombe's husband Thomas Chamberlain was also a mason.

The Thomas Colcombe above was the son of another Thomas Colcombe and a Malina (or Meline) Hughes who had married in 1746 in Hereford St Nicholas church.

The senior Thomas Colcomb died young in 1764 leaving Meline with a young family. Fortunately Meline survived until 1803. I think Thomas senior was probably the son of William & Ann Colcombe, but since I'm not totally sure, I've left that bit as a dotted line on the tree below.



The family tree below summarises what I know about the Colcomb/Colcombe family. It is hopefully reasonably accurate, but if you spot any errors, or any relatives, please feel free to E-mail me

Please click on one of the red links on the tree to move to a different page.

If any of the above is of further interest, please feel free to contact me at: n.rowberry@btinternet.com

Nicky Rowberry 2021

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Peasants to Puddles - My Family History. By Nicky Rowberry